Heart failure is a multifactorial syndrome associated with high mortality and rising prevalence. The pathophysiological concept in the development of heart failure remains obscure in some aetiologies. Diabetes mellitus for example predisposes for the development of heart failure independent of common risk factors like coronary artery disease, hypertension and valvular heart disease. There is some evidence for a direct impact of hepatic insulin resistance and lipid accumulation on ATP generation in myocardial mitochondria - a novel observation in the development of heart failure.
We are engaged analysing cardiac and whole body metabolism in patients at various stages of heart failure. to gain a deeper pathophysiological understanding and to unravel new therapeutic targets. To pursue this goal we work with state of the art techniques in cardiovascular imaging (contrast MRI, spectroscopy), immunohistochemistry, cell culture and in vivo techniques the for assessment of cellular energy metabolism in tissues samples obtained from endomyocardial biopsies and surgical acquired heart tissue samples. For further analyses, e.g. gene profiling in acute heart failure, we work in close cooperation with leading national and international laboratories.