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Read the latest news for July 2023 from the IU/IUH Cardiovascular Institute

July 2023 Newsletter

graphic reads "One IU CV Newsletter"

Cardiovascular Institute

One diverse academic health enterprise where people come to receive the highest quality heart and vascular care in their community while also enabling relentless innovation that fuels better health for Indiana and beyond. Read on to learn about recent advances in realizing this vision. 

New Section 
Please see the end of this issue for a new educational section with clinical news you can use in your practice today. 

Connect to Purpose


Dr. Onyedika Ilonze and Mr. David Wilkerson 

Indy resident completes Mini-Marathon nearly a year after heart transplant

David Wilkerson, an IU Health patient, was put on ECMO, the highest form of life support in February 2022 after his defibrillator fired five times. That same month, David received a heart transplant at IU Health Methodist Hospital by his surgeon, Kashif Saleem, MD.

In May, David successfully completed the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon, pictured at the finish line with his cardiologist, Onyedika Ilonze, MD. "Running is part of my healing process," Wilkerson said. "The recovery has been far more mentally challenging than physically. And I'm grateful that I get a second chance at life and an opportunity to continue doing what I love."

Read the full story



IU Health hospitals honored with platinum American College of Cardiology award

IU Health Arnett, Ball Memorial, Bloomington, Methodist, North, Saxony and West hospitals were all recently honored with a platinum performance award from the American College of Cardiology for participating in the Chest Pain MI registry. The award recognizes the hospitals' success in implementing high quality standard of care to heart attack patients. 

IU Health Ball Memorial Cardiopulmonary Rehab Center receives Ball State community partner award

The IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Center recently received the Ball State University 2023 Outstanding Community Partner Award. The award is presented to a local organization that has demonstrated excellence as a collaborator and co-educator with Ball State faculty, students and staff. This partnership has been a long-standing relationship and had positively impacted many in the community. IU Health Ball Memorial's commitment and service to Ball State University has enriched students' immersive learning experiences and has improved quality of life for many participants. 

IU Health Ball Memorial Cardiopulmonary Rehab Team

IU Health Bloomington Hospital celebrates a milestone

Kyle Hornsby, MD

Kyle Hornsby, MD, hit a milestone on May 25 - his 100th placement of the world's smallest pacemaker. Kudos to Dr. Hornsby and the EP team in the south central region for making a positive difference and for providing this life-changing procedure to these 100 patients!






Indiana School of Medicine and IU Health use new heart ultrasound technique to detect coronary disease in liver transplant candidates

Indiana School of Medicine and IU Health use new heart ultrasound technique to detect coronary disease in liver transplant candidates

IU Health is one of the nation's leading institutions performing life-saving liver transplants. Detection and treatment of heart artery blockages in advanced liver disease patients with coronary artery disease is a critical step in preparing these patients for transplant surgery. 

Visual assessment of heart muscle contraction by ultrasound during exercise stress or other forms of stress have been a traditional means of detecting coronary disease. Unfortunately, this method is less reliable in patients with advanced liver disease, sometimes detecting only 25% of liver patients who have known coronary disease. 

Dr. Wesley Anderson, a senior cardiology fellow, Dr. Harvey Feigenbaum, distinguished professor of medicine, and the Methodist Hospital cardiac ultrasound and stress test staff performed a study utilizing a new, quantitative heart ultrasound technique for detection of coronary disease in 146 liver transplant candidates. The new technique, called strain imaging, automatically measures changes in heart muscle contraction during stress rather than relying on visual assessment by a trained expert. Their investigation showed that strain imaging improved detection of coronary disease to 78% from 28% using conventional visual analysis.

Their study was published earlier this spring in the Journal of the American Society of Echocardiography, one of the world's leading cardiovascular publications. The technique of strain imaging is now being routinely applied in the evaluation of candidates for liver transplantation at IU Health. 

Welcome to our Team


Nabeel El-Amir, MD

Please join us in welcoming Nabeel El-Amir, MD, as our newest cardiothoracic surgeon at Indiana University Health Ball Memorial Hospital. Dr. El-Amir earned his bachelor's degree and medical degree from Syracuse University. He completed his residency at the University of Michigan and fellowship in cardiothoracic surgery at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center. Dr. El-Amir previously practiced at Michigan Medicine in Muskegon as well as Sparrow Health System as a cardiovascular and thoracic surgeon and Mohawk Valley Health System as the medical director of the Cardiothoracic Surgeon and Lung Cancer Program. He is certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Thoracic Surgery. 

Outside of work, Dr. El-Amir enjoys jogging, swimming, basketball, automotive mechanics and repair and antique cars. 


Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center


Krannert Biennial garners praise from CV researchers

This past May, the Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center at Indiana University School of Medicine and the IU Health / IU School of Medicine Cardiovascular Institute hosted nearly 200 cardiovascular researchers and clinicians for the inaugural Krannert Biennial at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indiana and Western Art in Indianapolis. 

The event included approximately 20 top cardiovascular speakers, including a special lecture by Valentin Fuster, MD, PhD, president of Mount Sinai Heart and physician-in-chief of the Mount Sinai Hospital as well as a look at regional STEMI care at IU Health, offered by Nathan D. Lambert, MD, an interventional cardiologist at IU Health and an assistant professor of clinical medicine at IU School of Medicine. Several other IU physicians and scientists spoke or moderated at the event, including Rohan Dharmakumar, PhD, Loren Field, PhD, Keyur Vora, PhD, Rolf Kreutz, MD, Subha Raman, MD, MSEE, Richard Kovacs, MD, Maya Guglin, MD, PhD, Mithilesh Das, MD and Khadijah Breathett, MD. Dr. Dharmakumar, executive director of the Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center, shared his groundbreaking research on hemorrhagic myocardial infarction. 

Seasoned scientists in attendance praised the scientific program and organization of the event, saying the Krannert Biennial "has been among the best meetings they have attended in decades," Dharmakumar said. There has also been interest to share the content of this event with the National Institutes of Health and leading cardiology research journals. 

The Krannert Biennial also featured an early investigator competition and poster session, where Shing Fai Chan, PhD, assistant research professor of medicine, received first place. 

Krannert Biennial Audience

Krannert Biennial Group Photo


Krannert Biennial Early Investigator winners announced

Early investigators who attended the inaugural Krannert Biennial hosted by the Cardiovascular Institute and the Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center at the Indiana University School of Medicine had the opportunity to display posters for the Early Investigator Competition and be considered for an oral presentation during the conference that brought in leading cardiovascular researchers and clinicians from all over the world. 

Shing Fai Chan, PhD, an investigator for the Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center at the IU School of Medicine, received 1st place honors for his presentation, "Hemorrhagic Myocardial Infarction Drives Lipomatous Metaplasia of Infarcted Myocardium". IU cardiovascular disease fellows Wesley Anderson, MD and Asad Torabi, MD, with the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, received 2nd and 3rd place, respectively. 

Participants included Wesley Anderson, MD, Shing Fai Chan, PhD, Conner Earl, MD/PhD student, Gabriel Gruionu, PhD, Yuheng Huang, graduate student, Mark R. Kauth, MD, Varun Rao, PhD, Asad J. Torabi, MD, each from IU School of Medicine, and Heesom Lim, PhD, from Lawson Health Research Institute, and Benjamin Wilk, PhD, from Western University Canada. 

Congratulations to all the young investigators! 

Krannert Biennial Abstract Winners


Krannert cardiovascular researcher receives NIH-NHLBI research grant

Zhenhui Chen, PhD

Congratulations to Zhenhui Chen, PhD, associate professor of medicine at the Indiana University School of Medicine and an investigator for the Krannert Cardiovascular Research Center, who was recently awarded a $2.58 million R01 grant for his research, "Critical Sorting Steps and Pathways in the Trafficking of Cardiac Sarcoplasmic Reticulum Proteins (R01HL169877)," from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health. Chen's research aims to understand how membrane proteins are selectively distributed to different compartments in heart muscles, so they can perform specific functions in health and diseased hearts in men and women. The goal of his research is to identify and design new drug therapies targeting the selective shipment of these proteins to relieve adverse symptoms of heart disease. The study term will run through 2027. 




IU Vascular Surgery resident receives SVS Foundation Vascular Initiatives Conference Trainee Award

Under the mentorship of Michael Murphy, MD, IU vascular surgery resident, Humraaz Samra, MBBCH, BAO, recently received the 2023 Society for Vascular Surgery (SVS) Foundation Vascular Research Initiatives Conference (VRIC) Trainee Award for his abstract, "Allogeneic Mesenchymal Stromal Cells Significantly Increase Type 1 Regulatory T-cells, Decrease Effector Th17 Cells, And Decrease Aneurysm Volume In A Dose Dependent Fashion In Patients With Small Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms - Results Of The Phase I Aneurysm Repression With Mesenchymal Stromal Cells (the Arrest Trial)”, which was presented at the annual conference in Boston, Massachusetts on May 10, 2023.

Dr. Samra's work was also published in the American Heart Association newsletter

Dr. Michael Murphy and Dr. Humraaz Samra

2023 IUHP Nurse Excellence Award

ACHD Nurse, Nikki Bradley, RN

Cheers to Nikki Bradley, RN, clinical nurse-ambulatory navigator at IUHP Cardiology, for receiving the 2023 IUHP Nurse Excellence Award! 







Clinical News You Can Use

Did you know at least half of all patients with heart failure have a normal ejection fraction? Click the link below to view the educational bundle to help you improve diagnosis and treatment of patients with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF). 

HFpEF Education Bundle

Do you have a story that reflects the strength of our statewide system for cardiovascular care? Please email OneIUCV so we can share with the team!