Disease mechanisms of heart failure

Sjaastad group

The aim of our group is to develop new advanced cardiac imaging tools, to exploit these and understand the remodelling process occurring in cardiac diseases, and search for new imaging biomarkers predicting adverse disease outcome.

During cardiac disease, the heart is exposed to various stress factors, such as hypertension, ischemia and infarction. This results in both structural and functional remodelling of the heart. However, the these processes are complex and result in a large variety of phenotypes. Additionally, available imaging techniques have limited capability to identify the details in structural and functional cardiac remodelling. Accordingly, robust imaging biomarkers of cardiac disease progression are lacking.

Over the last years we have explored the potential of tissue phased mapping, a MR technique, to offer high resolution functional imaging of the heart. This technique has the capability to advance cardiac imaging directly by offering new biomarkers of disease entities, but also to facilitate the development of new imaging techniques such as cardiac elastography. We are working to establish elastography as a 3D technique to identify myocardial stiffness, which primarily is a result of fibrosis. We are also using other techniques, such as T1 mapping and diffusion tensor imaging, to investigate myocardial structure. Additionally, we are using mathematical remodelling to integrate our imaging data to understand the underlying pathological processes, and identify new imaging biomarkers of cardiac syndroms, such as diastolic dysfunction.

Our group is translating new concepts and techniques from preclinical use to human imaging. We are running several clinical studies, investigating for instance biomarkers for early detection of fibrosis, 3D parameters of diastolic dysfunction, and effects of various diseases (such as kidney failure) on cardiac function.

The group leader is professor Ivar Sjaastad, which is a cardiologist. Group members have diverse academic background, such as clinical medicine, physics, mathematics, molecular biology and radiology. We are collaborating with leading national research groups in cardiology, radiology, nuclear medicine, cancer medicine, various clinical specialities, physics and mathematics. Also, our international collaborators are at the highest level, located at for instance the Mayo clinic, KU Leuven and University of Chicago.

Group Leader

Ivar Sjaastad

Head of Department & Group Leader & Professor & Senior Consultant

Group members

Emil Espe

Postdoctoral fellow

Gary McGinley

Doctoral Research Fellow

Haelin Kim

Research Technician

Henriette Schermacher Marstein

Doctoral Research Fellow

Henrik Dukefoss

Doctoral Research Fellow

Kjersti Blom

Doctoral Research Fellow

Linn Espeland

Research Technician

Lisa Smith

Postdoctoral fellow

Markus Borge Harbo

Medical Research Curriculum Student

Latest publications

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Sadredini M, Haugsten Hansen M, Frisk M, Louch WE, Lehnart SE, Sjaastad I, Stokke MK (2021)
[No title available]
Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol
PubMed 34270372 DOI 10.1152/ajpheart.00011.2021
Wanichawan P, Skogestad J, Lunde M, Støle TP, Stensland M, Nyman TA, Sjaastad I, Sejersted OM, Aronsen JM, Carlson CR (2021)
[No title available]
Front Pharmacol, 12, 638646
PubMed 34163352 DOI 10.3389/fphar.2021.638646
Marstein HS, Godang K, Flatø B, Sjaastad I, Bollerslev J, Sanner H (2021)
Bone mineral density and explanatory factors in children and adults with juvenile dermatomyositis at long term follow-up; a cross sectional study
Pediatr Rheumatol Online J, 19 (1), 56
PubMed 33902632 DOI 10.1186/s12969-021-00543-z
Berger SG, Sjaastad I, Stokke MK (2021)
Right ventricular involvement in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy: evidence and implications from current literature
Scand Cardiovasc J
PubMed 33759664 DOI 10.1080/14017431.2021.1901979
Bendiksen BA, McGinley G, Sjaastad I, Zhang L, Espe EKS (2021)
A 4D continuous representation of myocardial velocity fields from tissue phase mapping magnetic resonance imaging
PLoS One, 16 (3), e0247826
PubMed 33647070 DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0247826
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