Experimental animal models in cardiovascular research


Translational research requires adequate models to bridge the gap between in vitro experiments and clinical reality. Animal models basically serve 3 aims: 1) to gain mechanistic insights into (patho) physiological processes; 2) to mimic human disease; and 3) to test experimental therapeutic approaches, either separately or combined.

The aim of this course is to make PhD candidates familiar with cardiovascular animal models used in the different experimental laboratories. This enables the student to better judge the implications of experimental animal studies, to get a broader view of models with their advantages and disadvantages, and to use these insights to optimize own models.


In this course a total of at least 6 animal models with different experimental setups will be covered. The models include myocardial infarction and I/R injury, valve transplantation, experimental surgery concerning heart failure, hind limb ischemia, stem cell transplantation, stenting, hypertension. Techniques applied cover P/V loops, MRI, perfusion measurements, etc.


The course will be given in English and in such a way that both the PhD candidates and the lecturers are able to incorporate this course in their daily work. There will be 10 introductory lectures of 2 hours given by different lecturers. Besides theoretical background of cardiovascular experimental models, the PhD students will participate in  animal experiments. Also, the students will have to make an assignment for which they have to develop a new experimental animal model. The course will be finished within a time frame of 6 months maximal. This allows for the right planning and visits of animal experiments. To qualify for the certificate and 3 EC, participants must attend all lectures, animal experiments and complete the assignment satisfactorily. Attendance will be registered.

Number of participants

Maximum 16 per course. All PhD students can register, however if more than 16 persons register, the organization reserves the right to make a selection.


Start date: Wednesday February 22, 2017, 15.15-17.00 hours
Last date: Wednesday May 10, 2017, 15.15-17.00 hours


No charge for registered PhD students.

Course coordinator

Prof. P. Gründeman (UMC Utrecht, Dept. Experimental Cardiology, Division Heart and Lungs); E-mail: P.F.Grundeman@umcutrecht.nl; Tel. + (31) 88 7557769

Registration: Joukje van der Velde; Email: j.vd.velde@umcutrecht.nl; Tel. + (31) 88 7557769