Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine - Critical Care Research
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Research Overview

Critical Care Research

Pain and Neurosciences Research

Biomedical Innovation

Ethics and Health Policy

Clinical Research

Grant Funding


Cardiac Critical Care Research Program

Summary Science Features

Peri-operative myocardial ischemia and infarction (heart attack) represents the major cause of morbidity and mortality for the large number of surgical patients who undergoes a variety of operations such as heart transplantation, coronary artery bypass grafting, and revascularization. Because injured cardiac tissues after a heart attack typically cannot regenerate, ischemic myocardial injury often leads to deterioration of myocardial function and death. Therefore, it is critically important and clinically relevant to understand the molecular mechanisms governing ischemic myocardial injury and identify potential targets for intervention. 

Cardiomyocyte death and myocardial inflammation can both contribute to ischemic myocardial infarction and left ventricular dysfunction, yet our understanding of the signaling mechanisms controlling these processes in the heart remains incomplete. Understanding and preventing cardiomyocyte death and myocardial inflammation is an important strategy for reversing these adverse cardiac conditions and preserving myocardial function. Recent studies have revealed that innate immune system such as Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) signaling via MyD88 may play an important role in mediating tissue inflammation and regulating cell death/survival in response to non-infectious injury. Our investigation has focused on the role of TLR4 MyD88 signaling in modulating myocardial inflammatory injury and cardiac dysfunction after transient ischemia and to define the molecular and cellular mechanisms that govern these processes. This type of study could provide potential targets for intervention by modulating cardiac innate immune signaling pathway, either through tissue-specific gene transfer or pharmacological reagents.

Office Information

Department of Anesthesia
Critical Care and Pain Medicine
Gray-Bigelow 444
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114


Public Transportation Access: Yes
Disabled Access: Yes



Oleg Evgenov
Yan Feng
Yan Li
Rui Si
E. Wang
Ming Zhang
Lin Zou
Wei Chao, MD, PhD (PI)