Cardiovascular disease, such as heart failure, atrial and ventricular arrhythmias, hypertensive and valvular heart disease is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the USA and the world. Importantly, over 500,000 cardiac surgeries and procedures, which require detailed cardiac diagnostics and intense monitoring, are performed to treat arrhythmias and structural heart disease in the US each year, which together carry a morbidity and mortality risk of 1-30%, depending on a patient's comorbidities. Cardiovascular specialists are required to monitor the heart routinely during interventions and almost exclusively rely on surface ECG and pressure measurements from the heart and vascular compartments and in selected cases electrical mapping of the heart. Current state-of-art technologies for cardiac electrophysiological and surgical therapies for management of complex atrial and ventricular arrhythmias provide limited and time-disparate data to guide interventions and monitor patients, primarily relying on hemodynamic parameters, gross and time-consuming point-by-point electrophysiological mapping techniques, and intermittent evaluation of blood chemistries. At present these data, in addition to being limited, often have substantial time delays from sampling to usable readouts leading to increase intraoperative and post-operative recovery time. This proposal outlines development of a conceptually new approach to cardiac monitoring that can impact diagnostics, therapeutics, and ultimately lead to closed-loop bioelectronics control of the heart. For Quantum Phase 1, three aims are proposed:
Aim 1 : Development of bioelectronic interfaces, platforms/modules, and analytical tools for real-time assessments of the cardiac interstitial and vascular parameters (catecholamine levels, acid-base and metabolic indices), along with high-density thin-film microarrays for mapping of cardiac electrical function and recording of peripheral cardiac autonomic neural activity.
Aim 2 : Integration of monitoring platforms, technologies, and analytics for cardiac electrophysiological mapping, multi-point cardiac pacing, hemodynamics, autonomic function, and real-time assessments of interstitial (and plasma) neurotransmitters and neuropeptide levels, acid-base levels, and metabolic factors.
Aim 3 : Discovery and validation of critical autonomic, metabolic, and electrophysiological parameters that precede and predict adverse cardiac events in infarcted porcine hearts and initial proof-of-concept human studies. Developing and optimizing new mapping arrays and systems for real-time measurement and evaluation of multiple electrophysiological parameters simultaneously with instantaneous ?read-outs? of regional autonomic function (neural and cardiac interstitial neurotransmitters) has the potential to revolutionize the practice of medicine and patient care.

Public Health Relevance

Heart disease in a major contributor to mortality and morbidity in the USA. Current methods for monitoring the heart are antiquated and provide limited information. The technologies that we propose to develop will be able to directly assess several new aspects of the heart such as the control by the nervous system in real-time, to provide precise information of the diseased heart, monitor the heart and support novel treatments for heart disease by modulating nerves. Ultimately these technologies will also form the basis for bioelectronic control of the heart.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)
Research Project--Cooperative Agreements (U01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZEB1)
Program Officer
Bittmann, Moria Fisher
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of California Los Angeles
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
Los Angeles
United States
Zip Code
Hanna, Peter; Shivkumar, Kalyanam; Ardell, Jeffrey L (2018) Calming the Nervous Heart: Autonomic Therapies in Heart Failure. Card Fail Rev 4:92-98