School of Medicine

Cardiovascular Center of Excellence







LSUHSC Cardiovascular Center and Novo Biosciences Receive
$1.5 million NIH Grant to Study Myocardial Regeneration


Contact: Allen Alongi, 


New Orleans, LA (August 28, 2017) - LSU Health Cardiovascular Center of Excellence received a grant award from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to research the development, a novel agent, MSI-1346, for therapeutic stimulation of heart regeneration following acute myocardial infarction and heart failure. The grant will provide more than $500,000 in funding over two years to LSUHSC-New Orleans along with Novo Biosciences in Bar Harbor, Maine in ongoing research for the project.


In randomized experimental and data analysis protocols, MSI-1346 has been shown to regenerate heart, connective, nerve, skin, bone and vascular tissues in adult zebrafish. MSI-1346 also reverses genetically induced cardiac scar formation. In addition to researching advancements to improve heart function, MSI-1346 has already shown positive results in clinical trial patients with obesity and type-2 diabetes.


This award will further test a drug previously shown to be safe in humans that could be a critical step to eventually testing heart attack patients in the future. Both LSUHSC Cardiovascular Center and Novo Biosciences are confident that the grant will only begin to open more opportunities into potentially offering a new method to treating heart disease, the world' leading cause of mortality and morbidity in humans.


This research will be led by Cardiovascular Center of Excellence Director David Lefer, Ph.D., and Dr. Traci Goodchild, Ph.D. who is the Director of Cardiovascular Translational Research at LSU Health New Orleans. The translational core laboratory provides state-of-the-art work spaces include physiology laboratories, surgical suites, biochemistry and molecular laboratories and core laboratories, which will further testing on the efficacy of MSI-1346, the crucial step in potential clinical trials.


“We are very excited to collaborate with the team at Novo Biosciences on this very promising therapeutic agent for the treatment of heart failure,” said Lefer. “If our studies are successful, MSI-1346 could be very rapidly translated to the clinic and impact the lives of heart failure patients.” 

LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans  educates Louisiana's health care professionals. The state's health sciences university leader, LSU Health New Orleans includes a School of Medicine, the state's only School of Dentistry, Louisiana's only public School of Public Health, and Schools of Allied Health Professions, Nursing, and Graduate Studies. LSUHSC faculty take care of patients in public and private hospitals and clinics throughout the region. In the vanguard of biosciences research in a number of areas in a worldwide arena, the LSUHSC research enterprise generates jobs and enormous economic impact. LSUHSC faculty have made lifesaving discoveries and continue to work to prevent, advance treatment, or cure disease. To learn more, visit  or .

Novo Biosciences based of Bar Harbor, Maine is a regenerative medicine company developing small molecule therapies that reactivate and stimulate innate healing abilities in humans and animals.

“Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Heart, Lung, And Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R44HL139161. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.”