The Cardiovascular Research Center at Massachusetts General Hospital

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is now the number one cause of death in China, accounting for over 40% of deaths. In the next two years, over 100 million people in China will have some form of heart disease. This number is expected to double every ten years. Unlike many Western countries, China has a rapidly increasing rate of heart disease due to a combination of sedentary lifestyle, smoking, diabetes, hypertension, and obesity. This will result in a devastating and crippling epidemic, on a scale previously unimagined. Clearly, this is a very serious emerging health problem.

The MGH CVRC has established a China initiative to foster synergistic and strategic collaborations between the MGH CVRC and leading academic and medical institutions in China to advance biotechnology, research, drug discovery, education, and training in the area of cardiovascular medicine. These efforts include:

1. Medical education and exchange programs with leading universities in China
The MGH and the Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine at the University of Hong Kong have joined forces to create a joint MD-PhD program to train the next generation of physician-scientists in China. The MGH and Peking University are collaborating to advance medical education and clinical training through innovative exchange programs and meetings in the areas of Cardiology and Sports Medicine. This will include a meeting tied to the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

2. International meetings program
The MGH CVRC and Nature Publishing Group have organized a series of highly successful meetings in China. In 2005, the meeting was held at Peking University, and in 2007, at University of Hong Kong. The first day of the two day meeting focuses on medical topics relevant to China, while the second day focuses on drug development, intellectual property management, venture capital investment, and regulatory issues. Plans are underway for the next meeting in Shanghai in late 2008.

3. Research Collaborations
The MGH CVRC is collaborating with the Institute of Molecular Medicine at Peking University to develop and characterize non-human primate (monkey) models for diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. MGH is also helping design and build the first AAALAC accredited primate facility in China. The MGH CVRC has been successful at obtaining industry support for this work, which was recently highlighted in a Leading Edge article in Cell.

Director: Paul Huang, MD, PhD

Principal Investigators:
    • Rui Ping Xiao
    • Ming Zhe Chen
    • Zhong Wang, PhD
    • Sean Wu, MD, PhD
    • Kenneth R. Chien, MD, PhD
Massachusetts General Hospital the cardiovascular research center