EpiHF – Understanding the Pathophysiology Related to Epigenetic Modifications in Heart Failure Syndrome

Heart failure (HF) is leading cause of hospitalization in Europe with an increasing prevalence driven by demographic change and increasing life expectancy in Germany. There is an urgent medical need to improve the treatment of HF due to limited therapeutic options. Research on epigenetics helps to understand the role of the exposome in the development of the heterogeneous syndrome.

The goal of the EpiHF project is to explore epigenetic modifications, as reflected in CpG methylation, associated with disease development and progression. In doing so, the project is investigating the association of methylation patterns with (sub)clinical and molecular features genome-wide to better understand the pathomechanisms involved in disease progression. Analysis is performed using biodatabases of individuals with HF from the MyoVasc study and population-based controls from the Gutenberg Health Study. Comprehensive data from sequential deep clinical phenotyping and biomaterial samples including molecular information encompassing genetics, epigenetics, transcriptomics, proteomics, lipidomics, metabolomics, but also long-term clinical outcomes will be analyzed.

The research team combines JGU expertise in clinical epidemiology and systems medicine (Group Philipp Wild), epigenetics (Groups Christof Niehrs, and Steve Horvath, UCLA/USA), mass spectrometry based proteomics (Group Stefan Tenzer), and computational biology and data mining (Group Miguel Andrade).

The interdisciplinary research network serves as a nucleus for the development of an analytical platform to study the impact of epigenetic changes on healthy ageing, provides human reference data within the JGU life sciences initiative and will strengthen interfaces between disciplines for translational clinical research.

Principal Investigators

  • Prof. Dr. Philipp Wild, University Medical Center Mainz (contact person, e-mail)
  • Prof. Dr. Miguel Andrade, Faculty of Biology, JGU
  • Prof. Dr. Christof Niehrs, Faculty of Biology, JGU/Institute of Molecular Biology
  • Prof. Dr. Stefan Tenzer, University Medical Center Mainz