Aspirin Versus Blood Thinners in Atrial Fibrillation Patients with Stroke Risk

Nearly 40 percent of patients treated with aspirin alone despite previous data showing blood thinners more beneficial —

Researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine and University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine report that more than 1 in 3 atrial fibrillation (AF) patients at intermediate to high risk for stroke are treated with aspirin alone, despite previous data showing this therapy to be inferior to blood thinners.

The findings publish online June 20 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. … Read the Full Story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Dr. Jonathan C. Hsu

Dr. Jonathan Hsu.

The lead author of the study report is Jonathan C. Hsu, MD, MAS, Health Sciences Assistant Clinical Professor in the Cardiac Electrophysiology Section of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine.

Read the study abstract

Distinguished Professor Shu Chien Elected Fellow of National Academy of Inventors

December 15, 2015

Two researchers at the University of California, San Diego, have been named fellows of the National Academy of Inventors.

Shu Chien, Distinguished Professor of Bioengineering and Medicine, and Michael Sailor, Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, were among 168 new fellows announced by the academy today.. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Shu Chien, MD, PhD

Shu Chien, MD, PhD. Photo courtesy of Jacobs School of Engineering/UC San Diego.

Shu Chien, MD, PhD, is a world-renowned researcher and inventor who has conducted pioneering investigations in atherosclerosis and hypertension. His work has brought about significant advances in the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease.

Dr. Chien is founding chair of the UC San Diego Department of Bioengineering and director of the Institute of Engineering in Medicine. In the Department of Medicine, he is Distinguished Professor of Medicine in the Division of Physiology.

Earlier in 2015, Dr. Chen was selected to receive the prestigious Franklin Institute Award and was elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Two Lefts Make It Right: Cardiac Experts Find Novel Approach to Treat Heart Failure

Circulatory assist devices placed on both sides of heart restore normal blood flow —

A teenage girl faced with sudden rapid heart deterioration, a man in the prime years of his life suffering from debilitating heart failure and a former NFL athlete crippled by end-stage heart failure were all successfully treated with a surgical approach pioneered by cardiac experts at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine.

The work, recently published in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery, demonstrated significant benefits of implanting a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) in the right atrium to provide better blood flow through the lungs, giving complete biventricular circulatory support and fully replacing the heart’s function. …Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom

Dietary Trans Fat Linked to Worse Memory

Higher consumption of dietary trans fatty acids (dTFA), commonly used in processed foods to improve taste, texture and durability, has been linked to worsened memory function in men 45 years old and younger, according to a University of California, San Diego School of Medicine study published online on June 17 in PLOS ONE. …Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom

Principal investigator of the study is Beatrice A. Golomb, MD, PhD, professor in the Department of Medicine.

Internal Medicine Resident Drs. Noel Lee, Satya (Nanu) Das and Michele Pham Present Research at Medicine Grand Rounds

Three internal medicine residents who were among six winners at the First Annual Internal Medicine Residency Program Research Symposium on May 7 will present their research at Medicine Grand Rounds June 10:

Noel Lee, MD – The Prevalence of Coronary Artery-Pulmonary Artery Collaterals in Patients with Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension

Satya (Nanu) Das, MD – The Role for Cell Free Circulating DNA in Detecting Secondary EGFR Mutations in Advanced Stage Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Patients

Michele Pham, MD – Decreased BDNF in Aspirin Exacerbated Respiratory Disease

Internal Medicine Resident Drs. Julie Chen and Darrin Wong Present Research at Department of Medicine Grand Rounds

Drs. Darrin Wong and Julie Chen at Medicine Grand Rounds.

Drs. Darrin Wong and Julie Chen at Medicine Grand Rounds.

On June 3, 2015, Drs. Julie Chen and Darrin Wong presented their research at Department of Medicine Grand Rounds.

The subject of Dr. Chen’s research was “Failure to Adjust Diabetes Medications at Discharge for Hospitalized Patients with Poorly Controlled Diabetes.”

Dr. Chen worked with members of the faculty in the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, including Drs. Robert El-Kareh and Kristen Kulasa as well as Dr. Pedro Ramos from the Division of Hospital Medicine.

Dr. Wong presented his research on the topic, “Right Ventricular Dyssynchrony in CTEPH.” He worked with Dr. Daniel Blanchard from the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine.

Dr. Wong presenting background information about echocardiography.

Dr. Wong presenting background information about echocardiography.

Drs. Chen and Wong won their places at Medicine Grand Rounds when they were chosen for their admirable research achievements at the UC San Diego Annual Internal Medicine Resident Research Symposium on May 7.

The other research symposium winners were Drs. Satya Das, Noel Lee, Michele Pham and Kevin Shah. Drs. Das, Lee, and Pham will present their research at Medicine Grand Rounds on June 10.

Dr. Shah presented his research, along with fellow resident Dr. Nick Marston, on the topic, “Serial Sampling of Copeptin Levels Improves Diagnosis and Risk Stratification in Patients Presenting with Chest Pain: Results from the CHOPIN Trial” last June.

2015 Resident Research Symposium Winners

Research winners at last month’s Annual Internal Medicine Resident Research Symposium. Left to right: Drs. Shah, Lee, Das, Chen, Pham and Wong.

Some Atrial Fibrillation Patients Receive Unnecessary Blood Thinners

Researchers believe cardiology specialists may be unaware of risk —

About one quarter of all atrial fibrillation patients at the lowest risk for stroke receive unnecessary blood thinners from cardiology specialists, according to a new study by researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and University of California, San Francisco, and these health care providers must be made aware of the resulting potential health risks. The findings are published online April 13 by JAMA Internal Medicine.

“Clinicians who prescribe blood thinners need to be diligent about weighing the risks and benefits of these medications,” said lead author Jonathan C. Hsu, MD, cardiologist and assistant clinical professor of medicine at UC San Diego … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Dr. Jonathan C. Hsu

Dr. Jonathan C. Hsu

The lead author of the study report is Jonathan C. Hsu, MD, MAS, assistant clinical professor in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine.
See Full Text of Article (PDF) (UCSD only)

Researchers Discover Protein’s Pivotal Role in Heart Failure

Better understanding of molecular mechanism could lead to new drug targets —

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have identified a key piece in the complex molecular puzzle underlying heart failure – a serious and sometimes life-threatening disorder affecting more than 5 million Americans.

In a study published in the March 5 online issue of Cell Reports, Xiang-Dong Fu, PhD, and colleagues explored the heart’s progression from initial weakening to heart failure, and found that a protein, known as RBFox2, plays a critical role in this process. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Ju Chen, PhD

Ju Chen, PhD

A number of Division of Cardiovascular Medicine researchers and affiliates are coauthors, including Kunfu Ouyang, Indroneal Banerjee, PhD; Caimei Zhang, Biyi Chen, Ju Chen, PhD; and Long-Sheng Song.

Dr. Chen is Professor of Medicine, American Heart Association Endowed Chair in Cardiovascular Research and Director of Basic Cardiac Research at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine.

Senior author Xiang-Dong Fu, PhD, is professor in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and investigator in the Institute of Genomic Medicine at UC San Diego.

See Full Text of Article (open access)

UC San Diego Health System Retains #1 Ranking

US News & World Report Cites Region’s Only Academic Health System Among Nation’s Best 

UC San Diego Health System remains among the nation’s best, according to the U.S. News & World Report’s 2014-15 issue of “America’s Best Hospitals,” released this week. The magazine’s widely cited findings again placed UC San Diego Health System first in the San Diego metropolitan area and fifth in California, with national rankings in 11 specialties, up from 10 last year. This is comparable to the country’s most prestigious health care institutions.  Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Sulpizio Cardiovascular CenterUC San Diego Health System is nationally ranked in eleven medical specialties, including seven in the Department of Medicine:  Cancer, Cardiology, Endocrinology & Diabetes, Gastroenterology, Geriatrics, Nephrology, Pulmonology and Rheumatology.

Mother Delivers Baby, Develops Heart Disease

UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center among first in region to implant cardiac device

Three weeks after delivering her first child, Amanda began to suffer from extreme fatigue, headaches, a tight chest and stomach pain. An initial diagnosis of pneumonia changed for the worse: Amanda was experiencing heart failure. She was quickly transferred to UC San Diego Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center where a multidisciplinary team implanted a novel cardiac device under her skin, leaving the heart untouched, to prevent sudden cardiac arrest. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego News Center