The cardiovascular system is a closed system of the heart and blood vessels. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a class of diseases that involve the heart or blood vessels. The causes, prevention, and/or treatment of all forms of cardiovascular disease are active fields of biomedical research. Cardiovascular research entails the study of various pathological conditions that affect the heart and blood vessels, as well as the structure and function of the heart and vasculature.
Cardiovascular research has made significant progress in the last decade with several breakthroughs and advances in procedural techniques to treat arrhythmias and hypertension, the development of novel therapeutic strategies, and research on cardiovascular genetic diseases. Gene therapy, mitochondrial transfer therapy, and gene editing are exciting possibilities that could cure cardiovascular genetic diseases and treat acquired cardiovascular diseases. Research using human stem cells to generate human heart muscle cells in a dish and engineering heart tissue for transplantation are also actively being pursued by investigators.
Despite much progress, there is still much to be learned about the molecular mechanisms underlying the normal development and disorders of the heart. Cardiovascular studies include various diagnostic tests, such as electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), echocardiogram, stress test, cardiac MRI, and coronary angiography, among others. These tests are used to diagnose conditions such as heart disease, arrhythmias, heart failure, and coronary artery disease. Cardiovascular studies also involve research into the underlying causes of cardiovascular diseases, including genetics, lifestyle, and environmental factors, and the development of new treatments and therapies to address these conditions.
There are also several biological products used in the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Researchers in this field are working on developing new drugs, devices, and procedures to treat cardiovascular diseases, for improving human health and wellbeing.