The Duke Human Heart Repository (DHHR) is an ongoing repository of human heart tissues for research. Samples include both failing and non-failing hearts.   Individual sample sizes are typically 100-300mg for flash frozen tissues.

If you are writing a grant and would like to include the DHHR as a source  of tissue, or as a collaborator we are able to do that. We would be happy to consult , collaborate, or act as a tissue source. **Please note that all industry related agreements must be written as a collaborative project.

If you are interested in obtaining samples or in collaborating. please contact the repository manager Mike Watson and we can discuss your needs as well as the procedure for requests.



We recently have posted some new publications that were done using samples and expertise from the repository on the publications sub-page (see menu above)


Currently the repository has over 30,000 specimens collected from over 700 human hearts and LVAD cores.

Specimens are from both failing and non-failing hearts. We acquire samples of failing tissues from a variety of etiologies, and control samples are acquired from non-failing donors that were not accepted for transplant.

Samples are flash frozen in liquid nitrogen, fixed in formalin, preserved in RNAlater, LN2 powdered tissue, or embedded in OCT, making them compatible with a wide variety of research  methods.

Clinical information (i.e. medical history and often echocardiogram as well) is associated with most samples and some aspects of these data can be obtained using proper IRB and HIPAA regulation adherence.

Specimens equally represent both genders, and age ranges from young to old (most tissues are from adults).

The Duke Heart Repository has supported and is providing heart samples to Duke investigators as well as a growing number external investigators at institutions such as UCLA, Stanford University, UNC-Chapel Hill, Tufts University, West Virginia University, University of Cincinnati, and the Robarts Research Institute.


Below is a schematic diagram of the repository sample processing pathway:

Last updated: January 20, 2017