The Molecular Medicine for Cardiology section of Frontiers in Molecular Medicine welcomes basic science contributions that reveal new mechanisms or use new technologies and/or computational approaches to improve our understanding of cardiovascular (developmental) biology and the complexity of diseases of the heart and vessels. Cardiovascular disorders continue to be the leading cause of death worldwide. Over the past decades, significant technological and surgical advances have been made to better image the cardiovascular system, re-open or stent narrowed arteries, replace failing valves, enable precise pacing strategies to prevent arrhythmias or optimally synchronize cardiac rhythm with pump function, and even witnessed extracorporeal assist devices as bridges to heart transplantation. Despite these clinical advances that allowed for faster diagnosis and acute intervention in patients, cardiovascular disorders remain the most prevalent diseases on the planet with still insufficient therapeutic options and a poor prognosis. Cardiovascular pharmacotherapy is limited, generic and often does not tackle the underlying disease mechanism because our understanding of the molecular circuits that drive the onset of complex cardiovascular diseases remains primitive. It's been difficult to discover new disease pathways due to a lack of insightful human mutations, a lack of accurate proxy models of disease progression, and the lack of unique physiological endpoints for each specific cardiac disease. Because of our rudimentary understanding of disease pathways, new clinical strategies must rely on the crude endpoint of survival in mega-scale clinical trials often with insufficient regard for gender differences, and cardiovascular drug development is now generally avoided as an extremely high-risk and costly endeavor. In addition, therapeutic approaches to target individual disease-driving mechanisms within a personalized medicine approach are lacking. Yet, the field of Molecular Cardiology is in transition: new technology is rapidly harnessed to explore the uncharted waters and is already leading to breakthroughs and revolutionarily new experimental drug interventions. Advances in genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and single-cell technologies, and bioinformatics are revealing the complexity of the (human) cardiovascular system and a deeper understanding of the integrative biology of complex diseases. The integration of structural biology, gene silencing, viral gene delivery, and new high-throughput or optical technologies allows for the establishments of cause-effect relationships and create a basis for more sophisticated future interventions. Meanwhile, groundbreaking research in stem cell biology and regenerative medicine has advanced our understanding of human development and homeostasis, paving the way for new experimental human models and even tissue engineering-based regenerative interventions. Curiosity-driven, basic research thrives in an environment with patience, shielded from the immediate need to yield “useful” results to solve societal problems. CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats), the basis of the genome-editing technology that will drastically change the prospect of gene therapy, would not exist if microbiologists were not allowed to be curious to probe the functions of the bizarre arrays of repeated DNA sequences found in bacteria.
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Molecular Medicine for Cardiology welcomes submissions of the following article types: Brief Research Report, Correction, Data Report, Editorial, General Commentary, Hypothesis and Theory, Methods, Mini Review, Opinion, Original Research, Perspective, Review, Specialty Grand Challenge and Technology and Code.
All manuscripts must be submitted directly to the section Molecular Medicine for Cardiology, where they are peer-reviewed by the Associate and Review Editors of the specialty section.
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