New technology to identify compounds that triggers heart failure

Washington, Nov 27 ( A breakthrough will help identify compounds implicated in heart failure more rapidly, says a new study.

The technology, developed by University of Minnesota’s David Thomas and Razvan Cornea and Celladon Corporation’s Krisztina Zsebo, allows for quicker screening of compounds linked with proteins implicated in heart failure.

Chronic heart failure is the leading medical cause of hospitalisation and is expected to cost the US healthcare system $ 37.2 billion in 2009 alone.

About 5.7 million people in the US have heart failure, and it contributes to or causes some 290,000 deaths annually.

Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is used to measure disruption of the calcium regulatory system, which has long been implicated in cardiovascular disease.

This will provide key information on a particular drugs’ likelihood of success early in the screening process.

“Dr. Cornea and I, along with our students, have worked for more than a decade developing methods for preparing membranes from purified components, and using FRET to detect changes in protein interactions,” Thomas said, according to a Minnesota release.

“Scientists from Celladon saw the potential for drug discovery, and this resulted in a breakthrough that has added an exciting new dimension to our research programme.”

However, developing new treatments is an extremely costly and time-consuming process, taking nearly a decade to gain regulatory approval and requiring hundreds of millions of dollars, the release added.