Cardiovascular Genetics Research

Our team actively pursues research, in addition to our focus on diagnosing and treating patients. Advancements in research ultimately lead to more effective ways to identify, manage and prevent inherited cardiovascular diseases.

Elizabeth McNally, MD, PhD, directs an internationally recognized laboratory team of more than 20 researchers who are dedicated to understanding the causes of inherited cardiovascular disease and to finding more effective ways to manage and prevent these diseases. In particular, our group investigates how genetic defects lead to heart and skeletal muscle weakness so that we can identify new pathways for treatment. In addition, Dr. McNally also directs the University of Chicago Institute for Cardiovascular Research. This Institute includes researchers from across the University of Chicago Medicine who study the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of heart disease. The Institute also oversees a program to train graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to be cardiovascular scientists.

Patients with inherited cardiovascular disease may participate in genetic research through this laboratory. Dr. McNally’s research involving patients is focusing on identifying additional genes that cause cardiovascular disease. After discussion of the research and informed consent, a blood sample is taken and DNA is subsequently removed from the blood and saved for future research use. Results are not guaranteed through research participation; therefore it is recommended that patients undergo clinical gene testing first for those genes for which it is available.

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