Home » Uncategorized » Duke Heart Pulse — December 10, 2023

Duke Heart Pulse — December 10, 2023

Highlights of the week:

MUSIC-HFpEF1 Trial Launches at Duke

We are excited to announce a new clinical trial taking place at Duke and led by advanced heart failure specialist Marat Fudim, MD. The Modulation of SERCA2a In Cardiomyopathy – Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction (MUSIC- HFpEF1) clinical trial launched in early November with the dosing of our first enrolled patient at Duke University Hospital. Our second patient was enrolled last week.

MUSIC-HFpEF1 is a first-in-human trial using gene therapy to modify the pathophysiology of heart failure with preserved ejection fraction. Half of all heart failure patients are diagnosed with HFpEF, characterized by abnormal ventricular relaxation and elevated filling pressures. The trial, led by Fudim along with interventional cardiologist Manesh Patel, MD, as sub-investigator, presents a true multidisciplinary effort as it includes the expertise of members of the Duke Early Phase Research Unit (DEPRU), the cardiac catheterization lab, and the Cardiac Diagnostic Unit (CDU).

The study drug is an adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based gene therapy that is directly delivered to cardiac ventricular muscle cells via a proprietary intracoronary infusion system for enhancing the protein expression and functional activity of the SERCA2a gene.

“We believe this should, at least in theory, reduce the stiffness of the heart, which is the key problem in HFpEF,” Fudim said.

The trial will enroll patients with HFpEF confirmed by rigorous exercise hemodynamics and gas exchange in an open-label, dose-escalation, 52-week Phase 1b/2a clinical trial. The trial is being conducted at two sites, Duke and the University of Texas Southwestern.

While the initial primary goal is to assess safety following intra-coronary SRD-001 infusion, clinical efficacy will also be assessed with cutting-edge approaches.

If you have patients you think might be suitable and interested in participating, or if you have additional questions about the study, please contact Marat Fudim.


Visiting Moi CV Faculty Update

We received thoughtful feedback this week from our recent visitors from Moi University and Teaching Hospital in Eldoret, Kenya. Thanks to everyone who helped support Titus Ngeno, our Duke-Kenya cardiovascular lead, in hosting Drs. Joan Kiyeng and David Lagat, members of the Moi cardiology faculty who visited us in October.

Kiyeng and Lagat spent time observing and learning some of Duke Heart’s best clinical practices and learning more about our care delivery and management systems. Additionally, they were able to get to know members of our faculty better.

Of note, they spent time with Terry Fortin and Nishant Shah in the Cardiac ICU, where they observed the care of our LVAD patients and advanced heart failure population; and time in the cardiac catheterization lab with Andrew Wong, David Kong, Jenn Rymer, Marat Fudim, Schuyler Jones, and Rich Krasuski and were able to observe the watchman procedure, TAVI, complex caths, and post-transplant biopsies. They spent time with members of our electrophysiology team, including Larry Jackson, Camille Frazier-Mills, Zak Loring, Rob Lewis, and James Daubert, and observed several ablations for atrial fibrillation, as well as device implantations. They even had the opportunity to practice using an intracardiac ultrasound stimulator.

During their visit to the PAC and our Consult Services team, they spent time with Gerald Bloomfield, Titus, Cary Ward, and Michelle Kelsey, and more time with both Jerry and Titus, as well as Sreek Vemulapalli while visiting the CDU, and with Igor Klem to observe patients undergoing cardiac MRI.

In their follow-up report to Duke about their visit, the team noted our “excellent atmosphere” for mentorship, learning, and patient care with dedicated and motivated staff, along with excellent teamwork and support systems with highly trained personnel that make clinical care seamless.

“Thank you for the immense support, and engagement with our cardiology colleagues from Kenya during their recent trip to Duke,” said Ngeno. “Joan and David had very productive interactions and great conversations exploring future growth opportunities. They also got to watch a (winning) Duke football home game, courtesy of Duke alums John H. Lawrence & John E. Lawrence.”

Thanks again to all who made this site visit possible and successful, and for taking the time to share your knowledge with Joan and David.

Great job!


DUSON, CTSI Collaborate to Advance Research in Health Equity

Through a collaboration designed to advance research in health equity and social drivers of health, the Duke Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) and the Center for Precision Health have partnered with the Center for Nursing Research at the Duke University School of Nursing (DUSON) to bring more than 20,000 biological samples and linked data from a community-based registry at Duke Kannapolis to investigators at DUSON.

The new DUSON-MURDOCK Biorepository includes de-identified samples and associated data from nearly 12,000 racially and ethnically diverse participants in the Kannapolis Population Based Cohort, a longitudinal cohort based at CTSI’s research site in Kannapolis.

“We are thrilled to make thousands of biospecimens and associated clinical and outcome data available to the School of Nursing through this science-forward collaboration,” said Svati Shah, MD, MHS, who directs Duke Kannapolis and the Center for Precision Health. “This partnership is exactly what we envisioned when we created our biorepository initiative with the intention to share this powerful resource with more Duke collaborators.”

The Biorepository Transformation Initiative is available to all Duke researchers, who can complete this brief interest form as a first step toward accessing samples. DUSON is well and uniquely positioned to tap into this initiative to create a local biorepository to facilitate biomarker research to support their strategic priorities in health equity, social drivers of health, and nurse-led models of care.

“We are excited to test hypotheses exploring how social and contextual experiences can be embedded in our biology and thus our health. Understanding how these experiences impact health is a key piece of our strategic plan for research,” said Sharron L. Docherty, PhD, PNP, RN, FAAN, vice dean for research at DUSON. “Thanks to the sample size, diversity, and the number of chronic health conditions present across this data set, we can explore vital questions related to how the environment influences biology.”

Researchers at DUSON will use their DUSON-MURDOCK Biorepository in two relatively new areas of research: social epigenetics, or how social experiences become embodied in humans and can impact health in positive and negative ways, and social genomics, or how fixed biological traits underpin health outcomes that are influenced by social factors, such as stress.

“Duke Kannapolis will be a valuable collaborator as we explore ways to use these biospecimens to better understand how a genetic predisposition for a health outcome may be modified by social factors, and in turn, how social factors may become genetically embedded in humans, changing biological function,” said Julia K.L. Walker, PhD, director of the DUSON-Biomarker Laboratory. “The database is a remarkable resource.”

Data generated from the project will be returned to the Kannapolis database for other investigators to use for continued population-based research.

Kais Gadhoumi, PhD, assistant research professor at DUSON, will lead informatics and data management on the project. Duke Kannapolis leadership on the project includes Julie Eckstrand, RPh, executive director for scientific programs, and Douglas Wixted, MMCi, research program leader.


Shout-out to Tcheng!

James Tcheng

Congrats to interventionalist Jimmy Tcheng! He has been acknowledged as one of NC’s most respected doctors, as selected by his peers. Check out the Business News article below (under “Duke Heart in the News”.







Bowers Earns FACC

We are thrilled to share with the Duke Heart team that Midge Bowers, DNP, has been elected to Fellowship by the American College of Cardiology. Bowers, a nurse practitioner with our Heart Failure Same Day Access Clinic, is — we believe – the first APP at Duke University Hospital to receive the honor.

As a newly elected Fellow, Bowers has been invited to attend the ACC’s prestigious Convocation ceremony which will be held during the ACC’s Annual Scientific Sessions in Atlanta this coming April.

Congratulations, Midge! This is a wonderful achievement and well deserved!


Cox Earns DNP, Post-Grad Certification

Congratulations to Kevin Cox who graduated from the Duke University School of Nursing this weekend! Kevin graduated with a Doctorate in Nursing Practice and a Post-Graduate Certificate in Nursing Education. His project entitled “Implementation of Educational Intervention in Duke Left Ventricular Assist Device Department by Adding STOP-BANG Sleep Apnea Screening” was implemented at Duke University Hospital.

Congratulations, Kevin!



Filming for ARTEMIS Launch

This week we had the pleasure of hosting a small film crew as part of the collaborative effort between Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI) and Novo Nordisk for the ARTEMIS trial, which is expected to launch in mid-2024.

The ARTEMIS trial is a global cardiovascular outcomes study that aims to evaluate the effects of a study medicine versus placebo on cardiovascular outcomes in patients with acute myocardial infarction. This double-blind, randomized trial will follow 10,000 eligible adults for two years. It is a large-scale study to investigate the potential of the study medicine, an IL-6 inhibitor administered once monthly as a subcutaneous injection, to reduce the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) in patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI).

The crew filmed with Adrian Hernandez, MD, MHS, Vice Dean and Executive Director of DCRI and Principal Investigator for ARTEMIS, and interventional cardiologist, Jenn Rymer, MD, MBA, who will serve as the site PI for Duke.

The video will be released early next year as part of a meeting invitation to site investigators. To learn more about the trial, please visit https://duke.is/j/cydp.

New publications from the Duke Heart Team

Congratulations to the following team members on their latest publications!

Role of Advanced Practice Providers in the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit Team, was published online this week in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Callie Tennyson, Midge Bowers, Allison Dimsdale, Jordan McKenzie-Solis, and Jason Katz are the Duke representatives among the co-authors.

And Impact and Sustainability of a Palliative Care Education Module in Patients With Heart Failure published in the American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, published online Dec. 4, 2023. Duke authors are Shelley Thompson, Allison Lindgren, Jaime McDermott, Stephanie Barnes, Carolina Tennyson, and Bradi Granger.

Congrats to all!

Upcoming CME Symposia for Spring, 2024

Heads up on some CME dates you might want to put on the calendar for next year. Our Duke Sports Cardiology & Sudden Death in Athletes symposium will be held at the Trent Semans Center on Friday, April 12, 2024. And our Duke Heart Failure Symposium will be held at the Durham Hilton on Saturday, May 4, 2024.

Registration won’t be open for a while, but if you have any questions about either event, please reach out to Christy Darnell.

As soon as registration opens, we’ll have that listed here in Pulse.


Upcoming Events & Opportunities

  • Masking is strongly recommended throughout all clinical areas during respiratory virus season, from now through early March.
  • Lots of holiday fun in-house throughout the holiday season. Friday, Dec. 15 is CozyFest: Holiday Sweater Spectactular!, sponsored by Duke University Hospital. Also, be sure to check out Season’s Greetings Bingo; pop-up Cheer Stations (13th-18th); and Tribute Snowflakes: An Act of Remembrance in the corridor from DMP to Duke Central Tower throughout December. Details on the DUH SharePoint site.
  • And, everyone working at DUH on Monday, Dec. 25 is invited to enjoy a complementary holiday meal.


Transplant Grand Rounds

Dec. 12: Perioperative Anesthetic Management for Patients Undergoing Solid Organ Transplantation with Adam J. Milam. Noon, DN 2001 or via Zoom.

Cardiology Grand Rounds

Dec. 12: AHA Recap with Manesh Patel and Kristin Newby. 5 p.m., DN 2002 or via Zoom.

All 2023 Duke Cardiology Grand Rounds recordings are housed on Warpwire. The most recent CGRs with Dr. Holger Thiele of the University of Leipzig, Dr. Daniel Friedman of Duke, and Dr. Eric Secemsky of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center can all be found there. To access them, please visit: https://duke.is/DukeCGR; NET ID and password required. Enjoy!

CD Fellows Core Curriculum Conference

Dec. 13: HF/Txp Case Presentation with Joshua Rushakoff. Noon, DMP 2W96 (in-person only).

Dec. 15: Diseases of the Pericardium with Andrew Wang. Noon, Zoom only.

MDEpiNet: RAPID PASSION CV Virtual Think Tank Announced

Predictable And SuStainable Implementation Of National CardioVascular Registries: PASSION CVR — Registry-Supported Infrastructure Development for Prospective Trials: Pathways for DEI and “Long, Long” Term Vital Status Use Cases

Tuesday, January 9, 2024, 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST

Meeting Objectives:

  • Pragmatic aspects of CV device research approaches to DEI issues.
  • Pragmatic aspects of developing a streamlined, high quality, “long, long” (> 5 yr) vital status profile that could be predictably and reliably accessed by clinical trial sponsors and sufficient for public health safety assessments going forward.

Click Here to register!

Office of Faculty Announces Event with Israni of Stanford Medicine, Feb. 26

Academic Medicine, with all its complexities, naturally includes conflict amongst its crucial collaborators – trainees, faculty, staff, communities and more. 21st century leadership skills require all of us to strategically leverage components of this conflict for constructive change, with intentional and thoughtful actions. This talk will weave together themes from restorative justice and design thinking; and how they can be applied to artificial intelligence and JEDI (justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion), offering a case for new ways of leveraging conflict to advance a culture of connectedness and belonging. The featured speaker will be Sonoo Thadaney Israni of Stanford University’s Presence Center.

February 26: Leveraging Conflict for Constructive Change. 4-5:30 p.m., DN 2002. Presented by the Office for Faculty. Refreshments will follow. To learn more and register: https://duke.is/8/8d7f.  

Call for Abstracts: Duke’s Annual Quality & Safety Conference

Save the date for Duke’s Annual Quality and Safety Conference scheduled for April 11 in the Trent Semans Center. Click here to view Abstract Guidelines. Abstracts are due by 5 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2023. Late submissions will not be accepted. Contact cynthia.gordon@duke.edu or kyle.rehder@duke.edu with any questions.


Final Week for A&H Winterfest

The final Thursday of Winterfest Marketplace 2023, will be this week: December 14. The annual holiday art show and sale hosted by Arts & Health at Duke features local North Carolina-based artisans who are displaying and selling their work to Duke Health employees, visitors, and patients in the main concourse of Duke Hospital.

Art will be available for purchase from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Featured artisans include Beth Ann Taylor, Chapel Hill Woodturners, Bonnie Toney, and Justin Leitner.

A portion of the proceeds from Winterfest will go back to Arts & Health at Duke, which provides support to patients through music, visual art activities and journaling. This is a great opportunity to support local artists, and the Arts & Health programming at Duke Health, and to score some beautiful holiday gifts for loved ones!

Have news to share?

If you have news to share with the Pulse readership, please contact Tracey Koepke, director of communications for Duke Heart at tracey.koepke@duke.edu. We would love to hear about your latest accomplishments, professional news, cool happenings, and any events or opportunities that may be of interest to our Duke Heart family. Please call with any questions: 919-681-2868. Feedback on Pulse is welcome and encouraged. Submissions by Noon, Wednesdays, to be considered for weekend inclusion.

Duke Heart in the News:

December 1 — James Tcheng

Business North Carolina

2023 Top Doctors: A report on the state’s most respected doctors as selected by their peers

December 5 — David Harpole


AEGEAN Subgroup Analysis Fails to Demonstrate Clear Benefit With Perioperative Durvalumab Plus Chemo in EGFR+ NSCLC

December 7 — Neha Pagidipati, Jennifer Green, Susan Spratt, Jashalynn German, Matthew Crowley, Ryan Jeffrey, Ranee Chatterjee, and Bryan Batch


Inspiring Clinicians to Take Action on Closing Diabetes Care Gaps

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