South Asian-Focused Research
We have several clinical trials that focus on the genetic and hormonal risk factors behind heart disease in South Asians. Our research will help us develop technologies to predict and treat patients who are at the highest risk of developing heart disease and prevent their disease from occurring.
Together, with our National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded Stanford faculty members, we are looking closely at:
- Genetic mutations
- Heart muscle differences
- Blood vessel differences
- Molecular imaging markers of early heart damage
Insulin resistance research
If you are generally healthy and are of South Asian or European descent, you may be eligible to participate in a study about insulin resistance. This study looks at the causes of a higher degree of insulin resistance in South Asians compared to other ethnic groups.
This study measures:
- Insulin resistance
- Fitness level
- Location of fat and overall percent body fat
We can measure the amount of plaque in coronary vessels using non-invasive instruments like a cardiac CT or CAT scan. This tells us whether the amount of plaque is related to your level of insulin resistance, fat, and fitness levels.
We also collect blood to test high density genetic fingerprinting of DNA. Fingerprinting helps us compare genes related to insulin resistance across several ethnic groups, including South Asians and Europeans. The blood is also used to measure other biomarkers that may be important in insulin resistance and heart disease.
Biomarker prediction of coronary disease risk
If you are South Asian and between the ages of 20-55, with no history of coronary disease, you may be eligible to participate in a clinical study about the high risk of heart disease in South Asians. This study looks at the major body signals that predict who is more likely to develop coronary heart disease, heart attacks, or strokes.
We use non-invasive tests to see if you have coronary disease and insulin resistance. We can uncover the genetic and biochemical mechanisms that drive the increased risk of coronary disease in South Asians.
We also study dietary patterns and long-term dietary changes. This may impact insulin resistance and coronary disease outcomes in South Asian patients.
We are growing our partnerships with health care providers in India, Pakistan, Nepal, and other parts of South Asia to share our findings and learn more about heart disease in South Asians. With this information, we determine the most critical factors that drive the high risk of heart disease in our community and around the world.