Sern Lim

Heart Research UK has awarded the Novel and Emerging Technologies (NET) grant—of almost £150,000—to Sern Lim (Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, UK) and colleagues for a project that is evaluating the use of wave intensity analysis (WIA) to diagnose heart failure and assess patients who may benefit from left ventricular assist devices (LVADs).

A press release reports that when a heart beats, it generates a wave that propels blood into the bloods vessels. WIA is a technique that measures the pressure and flow characteristics of these waves. Potentially, analysing these waves can help determine how well the heart is pumping and how the heart interacts with the blood vessels. The press release adds that WIA may also have wider uses for monitoring heart function and treatment in very sick patients. 

In the project, Lim and colleagues team will see whether WIA can be used to identify the best LVAD pump speed for each patient. Lim says: “This is an exciting project that we hope will help us assess the function of the right side of the heart and which has the potential to improve outcomes for patients with LVADs. Using WIA to assess patient’s hearts may help us to decide who will benefit from an LVAD, and also allow us to adjust the pump speed to suit each patient to ensure that they are getting the best results. Heart Research UK have a long history of backing new and potentially ground-breaking research, so we are very grateful to them for supporting this project.”

Kate Bratt-Farrar, chief executive at Heart Research UK, comments: “We are delighted to be supporting Prof Lim’s research, which has the potential to have a big impact on the lives of those living with heart failure. Our NET grants are all about backing new and innovative developments in medical technology that can quickly and efficiently translate into real patient benefits. The dedication we see from UK researchers is both encouraging and impressive and we at Heart Research UK are proud to be part of it.”

In the last year, Heart Research UK has awarded more than £1.3 million in grants for medical research projects across the UK. To date, the charity has invested more than £25 million in medical research via its grants programme.