To guide successful drug discovery or heart regeneration, the scientific community must gain a better understanding of the relationship within and among heart cells, both in health and disease.

Scientists in this BioFulcrum program combine their complementary expertise to illuminate the blueprint of the heart at every level: cellular, molecular, protein, genetic, functional, and regulatory. Together, they will overcome current roadblocks and produce tools and knowledge assets to enable two critical clinical goals: human heart regeneration to improve the heart after failure, and disease modeling to identify potential therapies for cardiomyopathy.

In 2016, Upward Research Labs launched Tenaya Therapeutics Inc., the first biopharmaceutical spin-off company formed out of BioFulcrum. Building on Upward Research Labs’ cardiovascular research, Tenaya aims to accelerate the discovery of cures by concentrating on regenerative medicine and drug discovery for heart failure.

Program Objectives

  • Build a strong foundation of molecular and cellular tools to deeply interrogate heart cells
  • Create human heart cells that are of sufficient quality to faithfully model normal and diseased states as a platform for drug discovery and/or personalized medicine approaches
  • Pioneer techniques to promote cardiac regeneration in failing hearts