Lara Reyelt, veterinary technician and preclinical surgeon at the Interventional Research Laboratories (SIRL) at Tufts Medical Center, Boston, explains how research at her lab has helped advance human cardiovascular device technologies.
Tufts Medical Center is unique in that it has a preclinical cath lab at the hospital, which allows for very close working relationships between the preclinical and the clinical teams, spending up the collaboration and translational procedures. An example of this collaboration was the development of a new technique to treat congestive heart failure by temporarily occluding the SVC, which helps "reset" the heart. The lab also pioneered a novel approach now being used in the FDA DTU Trial to treat STEMI heart attacks with Impella hemodynamic support first, followed by 30 minutes of hemodynamic support prior to revascularizing the patient with percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). The lab also performed preliminary work with the HeartMate PHP System to determine protocols for the now ongoing SHIELD II clinical trial. The lab also was used to test several new device technologies prior clinical trials, including the Impella 5.5 device.