U of T Crest Faculty of Medicine / University of Toronto
Department of Paediatrics
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Cardiology

Mike Seed - Interim Division Head

The Division of Cardiology endeavours to excel in all aspects of paediatric congenital and acquired cardiovascular disorders. Areas of clinical activity include the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory, the Electrophysiology Section, Echocardiography Section, fetal cardiovascular disorders, the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit, Pulmonary Vascular Obstructive Disease, and Paediatric Heart Transplantation.

The division has the largest Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada College accredited training programme in paediatric cardiology in Canada and one of the largest programmes in all of North America. The subspecialty training programmes in interventional cardiac catheterization, fetal and general paediatric echocardiography, electrophysiology, and critical care cardiology are highly sought after and positions are very competitive. Trainees from our programme populate the globe and many are leaders in their countries and their own units.

Clinical research activities include considerable emphasis on the definition of outcomes of many forms of congenital heart disease. Areas of clinical research activity include three-dimensional echo-cardiography and tissue characterization; fetal cardiovascular medicine; cardiac morphology; imaging algorithms; basic research focuses on the biology of the pulmonary vascular bed; novel genetic manipulation of the arterial duct; the mechanisms responsible for the induction of immune tolerance and xenotransplantation; and the form, function and remodeling of the fetal cardiac myocyte.

History

The Division of Cardiology was formally established after World War II, and is now one of the largest and most successful in the world. Its philosophy has remained unchanged since its inception over 60 years ago; to provide the highest quality care in an evidence-based environment of clinical innovation and scientific discovery. Thus, over the past decade, the divisional activities, in close collaboration with surgical and intensive care colleagues, have contributed to our markedly improved preoperative assessment and postoperative outcomes for children undergoing cardiac surgery, led the field in development of therapeutic catheter techniques, made important contributions to our understanding of fetal cardiac medicine, established one of the largest paediatric cardiac transplantation centers world wide, and has won international recognition for its contribution in the field of epidemiology of acquired and congenital heart disease and surgical outcomes.

Each of these areas has provided the substrate for the large clinical research output of the division which is underpinned by a world class laboratory science program. Headed by Dr. Fred Keeley, the cardiovascular research focus within the Research Institute has made fundamental contributions to our understanding of the cellular biology and molecular genetics of pulmonary vascular bed. The team, led by Dr. Benoit Bruneau, has made exciting discoveries regarding the genetic determinants of abnormalities in the early fetal heart. Other areas of interest include the study of the fetal Myocyte, electrophysiology of the developing heart and immunology of cardiac transplantation. Finally, the Royal College accredited Paediatric Cardiology Training Program is the largest in Canada and one of the largest and most sought after in North America. As such, its fellows have populated cardiology groups throughout the world, many going on to become leaders of our specialty.



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