World Heart Day

University’s next virtual morning tea on Wednesday 29 September – World Heart Day – featuring guest speaker, Dr Sean Lal in Conversation with Professor Mark Scott, Vice-Chancellor and Principal

Dr Lal is Head of the Cardiac Research Laboratory in the Faculty of Medicine and Health (School of Medical Sciences), at the University of Sydney. His pioneering research expands our understanding of heart failure, with help from the Sydney Heart Bank, the world’s largest collection of heart tissue samples housed at a state-of-the-art biobanking facility at the Charles Perkins Centre.

Dr Lal is also a Consultant Cardiologist and Director of Acute Heart Failure Services at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Director of the Sydney Heart Bank at the University, and Chair of the Heart Failure Council for Australia and New Zealand.

His motivation to become an academic and cardiologist is deeply personal. He was 10 years old when his father developed acute heart failure requiring a heart transplant. Renowned cardiac surgeon and Sydney alumnus, Dr Victor Chang, gave father and son a few more precious years together – a priceless gift that Dr Lal is now paying forward.

In this webinar, Dr Lal will share insights into what makes the heart tick at the molecular level and unpack changes in the heart and its processes, such as a ‘switched off’ thyroid hormone, which might indicate heart failure. He will also discuss exciting plans for harnessing big data and Artificial Intelligence to analyse more than 17,000 heart tissue samples collected since 1989 and create a world-first online research tool.

Dr Lal is confident that one day discoveries made at the University of Sydney will mean he can provide answers to patients who ask him why they have heart failure.