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GarryMG

Research Abstracts Online
January - December 2011

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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
Medical School
Department of Medicine

PI: Mary G. Garry

Heart Failure and the EPR

Exaggerations in the cardiovascular responses to exercise in heart failure patients are mediated, in part, by an over-active exercise pressor reflex (EPR). Importantly, exaggerations in the EPR correlate with morbidity and mortality in heart failure patients. Using a novel animal model to study the EPR in rats with heart failure, these researchers have determined that the EPR is overactive in rats in heart failure just as it is in humans. They have also identified several mechanisms that contribute to this overactivity. The researchers are identifying the molecular determinants that underlie the exaggerated responsiveness of muscle group III afferent neurons in heart failure. By gaining an understanding of these mechanisms, we can attempt to specifically inhibit abnormal rises in blood pressure and heart rate in response to exercise. Since exaggerations in the EPR correlate with morbidity and mortality in heart failure patients, normalization of the EPR holds tremendous potential for improved quality of life and lengthening of life in heart failure patients.

Group Members

Minh M. Nguyen, Faculty Collaborator
Karen K. Porter, Research Associate
Laurence E. Stout, Research Associate