CNIC and Philips researchers have developed and patented a revolutionary technique that allows cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (CMRI) to be performed in less than one minute. This ultra-fast cardiac MRI, called ESSOS (Enhanced SENSE by Static Outer volume Subtraction), enables an accurate assessment of the anatomy and function of the heart and also reduces costs and increases patient comfort. The technique has been validated in more than 100 patients with various cardiac pathologies. The technology is currently being validated internationally within a H2020 project led by the group.

CMR is the ideal technique for studying the anatomy, function and even cellular composition of the heart; it allows the heart to be explored noninvasively and without radiation. Despite the fact that most hospitals have MRI equipment available, its use for studying the heart of patients is limited. The main reason for this is the time required to perform a complete study (between 45-60 minutes).

On the other hand, the MRI equipment in hospitals performs other types of studies, not only of the heart, which makes it even more difficult to perform cardiac studies of such a long duration.

To solve this limitation, CNIC researchers, in collaboration with Philips, have developed a specific acceleration technique for the acquisition of CMR studies. This technique makes it possible to study the anatomy and function (motility) of the cardiac muscle, as well as cardiac areas that have suffered an infarction or have fibrosis. It also incorporates the possibility of analyzing the entire thoracic cage in 3D and, by means of mathematical algorithms, to focus only on the heart and the great vessels (mobile part), thus reducing the study time.

One of the main problems of atherosclerosis disease is that it is diagnosed too late. Primary prevention is currently based on the evaluation of modifiable risk factors according to standardized recommendations. There is a need to find new biomarkers for subclinical atherosclerosis, which are independent of traditional cardiovascular risk factors and scores. The CNIC, UAM and IIS-FDJ researchers have discovered a panel of proteins, which are accumulated in the atheroma plaques themselves even in the earliest stages of formation. Moreover, the plasma abundance levels of these proteins could be used to predict the presence of subclinical atherosclerosis.

Diagnosis/biotech companies are sought for a license agreement.

Scientific publication:

Pulmonary hypertension (PH), defined as the increase of mean pulmonary blood pressure above normal values, encompasses a series of disorders characterized by the increase of pulmonary vascular resistance and progressive deterioration of the right ventricle. The incidence of pulmonary hypertension in the population is high and it is associated with high morbidity and mortality. Approximately two thirds of patients with left ventricular dysfunction (systolic or isolated diastolic) develop pulmonary hypertension. Currently, there is a lack of treatments for pulmonary hypertension.

CNIC and CLINIC researchers have described a novel effective treatment for pulmonary hypertension of different etiology, both chronic and acute. They have found that selective stimulation of beta-3 adrenergic receptors has a beneficial effect in pulmonary hypertension.

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