At the University of Ottawa Heart Institute (UOHI), research is closely integrated with clinical care. Affiliated with the University of Ottawa, we align research with clinical needs to establish a seamless linkage, effectively translating research from “bench to bedside.” Indeed, we are uniquely placed to achieve complete integration and synergy between clinical care and research innovation and excellence through our large patient population base.
Our investigators regularly publish in prestigious journals and our extensive network of partnerships encompass regional, national, and international activities. Since 2011, the Institute has been ranked in the top 3% of worldwide research institutions for normalized research impact, by Scimago Institutional Rankings (SIR), the most comprehensive ranking in this area. In 2014, we placed as the number one cardiovascular research centre in Canada.
Together with our regional partners, UOHI is building on a solid foundation following the implementation of the 2013-17 Ottawa Region for Advanced Cardiovascular Research Excellence (ORACLE) Strategic Plan. The ORACLE 2 strategic directions for 2018-24 (pdf) maximize regional and interdisciplinary research to solve major questions in cardiovascular disease prevention and treatment. This will accelerate our global leadership in cardiovascular health innovation.
In disease areas with the greatest patient burden, we are creating and supporting unique Innovation Hubs of interdisciplinary research groups who will work with our Heart Teams in addressing key clinical care gaps. The Innovation Hubs foster collaboration and leverage Ottawa’s unique regional advantage, and generate lateral connectivity to harness talent, expertise, resources and opportunities. In turn, Ottawa is defining the next cutting edge and becoming a magnet for the global talent of trainees, rising research stars, and established investigators alike. To learn more, read our Research Strategic Goals and the ORACLE 2 strategy.
The UOHI’s research infrastructure includes advanced equipment, endowed fellowships and research chairs, and data analysis and administrative support offices, all of which foster the pursuit of excellence, scientific achievement and clinical impact. Our research endeavours are supported through competitive funding obtained via grants and contracts, as well as a vigorous fundraising campaign by the Heart Institute Foundation (which includes a more than $50 million research endowment).
Our researchers are highly successful in obtaining competitive peer-reviewed grants awarded from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, Genome Canada, and the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation, among others. State-of-the-art research facilities at UOHI include the Ruddy Canadian Cardiovascular Genetics Centre (the only one of its kind in Canada), advanced cardiac imaging and analysis capabilities, electron microscopy, and a cyclotron facility. In addition, the Ottawa region is home to world class centres such as the Canadian Vascular Network, Heart Foundation Centre for Stroke Recovery, the Brain and Mind Research Institute, the Stem Cell Network, and the Canadian Stroke Network. Other core facility service laboratories, such as those provided by the University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine, are available in the Ottawa region.
In close collaboration with the University of Ottawa and Carleton University, the Heart Institute educates and trains undergraduates, graduates and post-graduates in an environment that mandates a vigorous pursuit of research.
Selected Research Publications
Our research has received worldwide recognition through publications in prestigious journals:
- Non-invasive, innovative PET imaging (using Rubidium-82), is effective in revealing cardiac allograft vasculopathy, a condition of narrowing large and small vessels in the heart following a transplant in Journal of the American College of Cardiology 2018 Apr 3;71(13):1444-1456 reveal
- Implementation of the Ottawa Model for Smoking Cessation in diabetes education programs showed increased quit rates amongst smokers with diabetes in Diabetes Care 2018 Mar;41(3):406-412
- A review of pre-clinical research published in leading cardiovascular journals over the past ten years calls for concerted efforts to address sex bias, such as adequate representation of both sexes, in pre-clinical studies in Circulation Research 2017 Jun 9;120(12):1916-1926
- Workplace interventions improve moderate to vigorous intensity physical activity and related cardiometabolic health in working-age women in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes 2017 Feb 22 10(2) - Go Red for Women Special Issue
- Major role of inflammation in driving plaque rupture in Science Advances 2016 Jul 22;2(7)
- Pocket hematoma, a common complication of cardiac implantable device, if clinically significant, is associated with increased risk of infection (the BRUISE CONTROL INFECTION study) in J Am Coll Cardiol. 2016 Mar 22;67(11):1300-8
- Both primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) and pharmacoinvasive therapy are effective; however, a propensity for more bleeding with a pharmacoinvasive therapy was observed - within the context of a STEMI system in JACC Cardiovascular Interventions 2016 Oct 9(19), 2014-2020
- A comprehensive 1000 Genomes–based genome-wide association meta-analysis of coronary artery disease in Nature Genetics. 2015, 47, 1121-1130
- * Endothelial Gata5 transcription factor regulates blood pressure in Nature Communications. 2015 Nov 30;6:8835
- Genetic variants at position 9p21.3 increase the risk of heart disease by preventing the TEAD proteins from binding to DNA and turning on nearby genes required to keep smooth muscle cells from growing in Circulation. 2015, Nov 24:132(21)1969-78
- Clinical Impact of Changes in Left Ventricular Function After Aortic Valve Replacement: Analysis From 3112 Patients in Circulation. 2015 Aug 25:132(8):741-7
- Macrophage Mitochondrial Energy Status Regulates Cholesterol Efflux and Is Enhanced by Anti-miR33 in Atherosclerosis in Circulation Research. 2015, Jul 17;117(3):266-78
- Anti-platelet therapy that includes clopidogrel, a medication that helps prevent blood clots, and aspirin, gives better outcomes for patients in secondary prevention following coronary artery bypass graft surgery (the CASCADE trial) in Circulation (2014). 130(11 Suppl 1), S12-
- Effects of short-term continuous positive airway pressure on myocardial sympathetic nervefunction
and energetics in patients with heart failure and obstructive sleep apnea: a randomized study in Circulation. 2014 Sept 9:130(11): 829:901
- Role of diabetes / high blood sugars on cardiac stem cells ability to repair an injured heart in Circulation. 2014 Sep 9;130(11 Suppl 1):S70-6
- Decision Making at the Time of ICD Generator Change: Patients’ Perspectives in JAMA Internal Medicine. 2014, Sept;174(9):1509-11
- A genetic variant, discovered at the UOHI, contributes to the development of heart disease though promoting chronic inflammation, in Cell Reports, 2014, May 8: 7(3): 834-847
- A new heart protective protein in Nature Communications, 2014, March 1; 5(3430): 1-14
- The best method for treatment patients with anti-coagulant for pacemaker or ICD surgery in New England Journal of Medicine, 2013, May 30; 368: 2084-2093
- Showed that Cardiac Computed Tomography can identify coronary atherosclerosis in a significant number of patients independent of clinical variables as measured by Framingham Risk Score. European Heart Journal. 2013 Apr;34(14):1075-82
- A point of care genetic test for personalizing anti-platelet treatment in The Lancet, 2012, May 5; 379(9827): 1705-1711
- Discovered a novel gene involved in cardiac development in Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2011 Jun 3;286(22):19702-13.
- The STEMI program in the New England Journal of Medicine, 2008 Jan 17; 358(3): 231-40
- The first gene for coronary artery disease in Science, 2007 Jun 8; 316(5830): 1488-91
*Led by our Ottawa regional partners