Improving risk stratification in HCM

Our heart experiences changes in size and shape caused by disease. Measurements of our heart such as volume or wall thickness from clinical scans help doctors understand disease progression. However, these generalised measurements of shape miss the rich anatomical detail of the heart, and fail to inform us of the effects of shape on heart function.

This project will make full use of existing clinical cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) scans by investigating and applying new computational methods to characterise the shape of our heart. We will develop technology to extract anatomy from scan images, and build computer 3D models of the heart. We will then create a large collection of computational hearts with data from thousands of patients with a specific disease, and measure the differences between their shape with unprecedented levels of detail. This information will help cardiologists track the progression of disease with greater accuracy, and better inform treatment decisions.

Goal of research

To develop, validate and make available to the scientific community a novel methodology to quantify the anatomical changes of the heart, and provide a large collection of 3D models of the heart with a specific disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Potential benefit of research

The new methodology will enable cardiologists to detect subtle anatomical changes caused by disease progression or in response to a given therapy. This information will help guide appropriate therapy such as implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICD) to prevent sudden cardiac death (SCD).

Funder: British Heart Foundation