The Pediatric Cardiovascular Basic Research Program was established at the BC Research Institute for Children’s and Women’s Health in 2000.
Two senior career investigators, Dr. Glen Tibbits and Dr. Casey Van Breeman, developed the program that includes a new 850 square-foot laboratory space equipped with state-of-the-art technology. The team has specifically concentrated their efforts on:
molecular cardiac morphology and function
assessment of vascular smooth muscle function
myocardial protection and arrhythmogenesis
Dr. Tibbits’ primary areas of investigation are molecular cardiac morphology, myocardial excitation-contraction coupling mechanisms, and molecular mechanisms of electrogenesis in the neonatal heart. Dr Tibbits also collaborates with the cardiovascular surgical team in the assessment and development of new strategies for the myocardial preservation of the neonatal heart.
Dr. Van Breeman focuses his work on vascular smooth muscle function, cellular excitation-contraction coupling of smooth muscle, cellular mechanisms of vascular dysfunction in diabetes, and assessment of endothelial smooth muscle function in Marfan’s Syndrome.
Drs Tibbits and Van Breeman have been recipients of multiple research grants and Dr. Tibbits was awarded the prestigious Canadian Research Chair in Molecular Cardiac Physiology. They are involved in the doctoral and post-doctoral work of several trainees.
A multifaceted approach has been developed between clinical and basic research to develop a translational research program. This approach will bring a unique blend of expertise between the clinical and basic research focusing attention not only on the molecular aspect of heart function, but incorporating the clinical relevance in such areas as diabetes, Marfan’s Syndrome, hypertension, heart arrhythmia and genetics.