The Kovacic Laboratory, launched in the fall of 2011, is a well-established research facility under the umbrella of the Cardiovascular Research Center at Icahn School of Medicine in New York City. Building on our many research successes, our laboratory is dedicated to making new and game-changing discoveries related to cardiovascular disease and to blockages of the heart arteries (coronary artery disease) – the leading cause of mortality in the United States and the world.
Under Dr. Kovacic’s leadership, the laboratory has initiated a major project at Mount Sinai to investigate the genetics of important cardiovascular conditions. In particular, we have a major interest in fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD), spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) and cervical artery dissection (CvAD), and are actively investigating the cellular and genetic problems that cause these diseases. This research involves identifying patients with FMD, SCAD or CvAD, and then investigating the cell and gene problems from which these patients suffer. Together, through these and other studies, it is our long-term scientific goal to make meaningful inroads into the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease.
The importance of our research has been acknowledged with numerous high-impact publications and research grants, including federal funding from the National Institutes of Health through the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. One area of particular focus includes gaining a better understanding of atherosclerotic plaques. These plaques occur due to build-up of cholesterol and fats in the arteries, and can cause heart artery blockages, heart attacks and even strokes. Understanding how atherosclerotic plaques form and what makes them grow larger is of critical importance for helping to prevent and treat cardiovascular disease, and we have generated pivotal new data to indicate the precise cells that are involved in this process.
Please watch Dr. Kovacic’s grand rounds on: “Defining the Cause of FMD and Redefining Our Understanding of Spontaneous Arterial Dissection”