The Goodyer lab is focused on understanding the molecular regulators essential for the development and function of the cardiac conduction system (CCS), specialized heart cells required for the normal rhythmic beating of the heart.
Using a broad array of techniques, including single-cell multiomics (including RNA- and ATAC- [Assay for Transposase-Accessible Chromatin] sequencing), murine genetics, advanced imaging (iDISCO+) as well as human ex vivo and in vitro (human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes) modeling, we strive to better understand the diverse cell types that make up the CCS as well as the coding and non-coding regions underlying their development and heart rhythm disorders afflicting humans.
Accidental injury to the cardiac conduction system (CCS), indistinguishable from the surrounding heart muscle tissue, is a major complication in cardiac surgeries. To address this unmet need we have engineered targeted antibody-dye conjugates directed against the CCS, allowing for the in vivo visualization of the CCS following a single intravenous injection in mice.
These optical imaging tools have high sensitivity, specificity, and resolution, with no adverse effects to CCS function. Further, when conjugated to an alternative cargo, our antibody conjugates can also be used to modulate CCS biology in vivo providing a proof-of-principle for targeted cardiac therapeutics.
Based on this work, our group continues to develop future translational approaches targeting the CCS for visualization and therapy in cardiothoracic surgery, cardiac imaging and arrhythmia management.