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Department of Surgery

Rupak Mukherjee, PhD Research

Rupak Mukherjee, PhDDr. Mukherjee’s research interests include mechanisms of structural remodeling of the heart related to alterations in mechanical stress and arrhythmias.

The matrix metalloproteinases (MMP) are enzymes that can degrade a number of connective proteins in the extracellular matrix.  In appropriate MMP activation has been implicated in causing changes in heart shape and size associated with cardiac disease.  The above photographs show time-dependent changes in heart size and activation of gene promoters for two MMPs, MMP-2 and MMP-9 following myocardial infarction (MI).  Mice used for this study had a specific “reporter” gene that produced a predominantly bacterial protein, which stained green, when the gene promoters for either MMP-2 or MMP-9 were activated.  Photographs show hearts from the MMP-2 gene promoter reporter mice (top) and MMP-9 gene promoter reporter mice (bottom) following MI.  Scale grid on the left represents four 1mm x 1mm squares.  (LA: left atrium, RV: right ventricle).

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Recent Publications

  • Mukherjee R, Brinsa TA, Dowdy KB, Scott AA, Baskin JM, Deschamps AM, Lowry AS, Escobar GP, Lucas DG, Yarbrough WM, Zile MR, Spinale FG. Myocardial infarct expansion and matrix metalloproteinase inhibition.  Circulation 107:618-625. 2003.
  • Mukherjee R, Lowry AS, Allen RA, Stroud MR, Wharton JM, Ikonomidis JS, Crumbley AJ III, Spinale FG, Gold MR. Induction of matrix metalloproteinases and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases in atrial myocardium in patients with atrial fibrillation.  Am J Cardiol 97:532-537, 2006.
  • Mukherjee R, Zavadzkas JA, Saunders SM, McLean JE, Jeffords LB, Stroud RE Leone AM, Koval CN, Rivers WT, Basu S, Sheehy A, Michal G, Spinale FG. Targeted myocardial microinjections of a biocomposite material reduces infarct expansion in pigs.  Ann Thorac Surg, In Press 2008

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