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Organizer Insights on Heart Failure Mechanisms & Therapies with Dr. Saptarsi Haldar

On September 28, 2022, academic and industry leaders will assemble in Breckenridge, Colorado, to discuss the latest advances in understanding and treating heart failure. Here we catch up with meeting organizer Dr. Saptarsi Haldar about what he is looking forward to at the meeting, and exciting new advances in the field!

Dr. Saptarsi Haldar: Developing novel therapies for heart failure remains one of the biggest unmet needs for patients and society.  For many years, we used to say at these Symposia that “no new therapies for heart failure have been developed in nearly two decades.” 

I’m excited to say that we are at an inflection point in the heart failure field -- things are changing as evidenced by several recent successes in clinical trials, advent of new technologies, and game-changing discoveries in fundamental biology. 

Guided by new discoveries in fundamental biology, new ways to understand human disease (e.g. large scale genomic efforts, single cell epigenomic interrogation), and the development of new therapeutic modalities, we have the opportunity to tackle heart failure in a whole new way. 

Another exciting theme is the emergence of therapeutic opportunities at the intersection of diverse fields, including:

  • interplay between the immune system and the heart
  • manipulating systemic substrate and energy metabolism in heart failure
  • targeting non-cardiomyocyte populations in heart failure
  • leveraging human genetics to unravel novel disease mechanisms and precision therapeutic approaches, nucleic acid therapeutics and engineered tissues. 

Importantly, we have seen an explosion of collaboration between academic centers and the biotechnology/biopharma sector which will only increase exponentially – this will be essential for our ability to develop therapeutic strategies that ‘move the needle.’  In addition to defining novel mechanisms, we will have to work together to unravel the heterogeneity of the human heart failure syndromes.  Ultimately, we will need to define which patient subsets are most likely to benefit from a particular therapeutic intervention. 

I’m really excited because this Keystone meeting will have robust participation from both academia and biotech/biopharma and will feature cutting edge basic and translational science that is at the intersection of the aforementioned fields. 

Given the emerging role of substrate/energy metabolism and obesity as a therapeutic target in heart failure, I am particularly excited that our meeting will be joint with mitochondria and metabolism this year.

Most importantly, in addition to diverse scientific topics, we are paying close attention to assembling a diverse set of speakers encompassing many institutions across the world, stages of career, academia/biopharma, race, ethnicity and gender.  I am particularly excited to feature early stage scientists and trainees in our program and to meet with the next generation of investigators.  It’s a great opportunity for mentorship and career development activities.   We have lots of room for short talks!

Submit your work for the opportunity to be selected for a short talk alongside field leaders! Abstract deadline for short talk selection: June 28-- Apply Now!

And of course, I am really looking forward to seeing everyone in person again.  This is the first scientific symposium I will have attended live in 2 years!  I know colleagues from across the world are eager to get together again.  As we also have the hybrid option of virtual participants, I anticipate that we will have a record attendance in Breckenridge for this Keystone Symposium!

There’s nothing better than talking science over lite bites and your favorite beverage after a beautiful afternoon of skiing!    

Join Dr. Haldar to discuss emerging research on Heart Failure with academic and industry experts, and collaborate towards novel treatment approaches in Breckenridge, or virtually!


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Shannon Weiman
Shannon Weiman earned her PhD in Biomedical Sciences from the University of California, San Diego, specializing in microbiology and immunology. Prior to joining the Keystone Symposia team, she worked as a freelance writer for leaders in academic, industry and government research, including Stanford University’s Biomedical Innovation Initiative, the University of Colorado’s Biofrontiers Program, UCSF, the FDA and the American Society for Microbiology.