The Magdi Yacoub Foundation and the Qatar-Aswan-London (QAL) Advanced Cardiovascular Institute are establishing the Aswan Heart Centre (AHC) with the aim of improving the healthcare of the heart and providing advanced cardiac surgeries in the less supported regions of Egypt. Currently, AHC is performing many of the first cardiac surgeries to be done in southern Egypt and for people coming from all over Egypt. However, the overall purpose is to:
Deliver state-of-the-art clinical services to the local community (thus enhancing longevity and quality of life);
Attract patients from different regions of the world;
Develop a local generation of physician/scientists, engineers, biologists and physicians who specialise in this field;
Contribute to global science and knowledge; and
Help to develop biotechnology in the region.
An important component of the mission is to focus on translational research. Advanced facilities for imaging and basic science laboratories will foster translational research focused on heart failure and valvular disease. A major research focus of the Institute will be to understand biological-mechanical device interaction and, through developing new devices and strategies, to enhance the incidence, extent and durability of cardiac recovery. The ultimate aim is to develop a unified approach to regenerative therapy and tissue engineering different components of the heart.
This shared interest in translational research with the Center for Informatics Science (CIS), which is one of the research institutes of the Nile University, instigated the collaboration between the two centers. The CIS will be providing the technological support in the area of cardiac imaging to help the physicians and surgeons in studying the heart before and after surgery. This will be done noninvasively using state-of-the-art imaging modalities, such as MRI and CT, which will be an important part of the AHC facilities. The CIS has extensive experience in developing state-of-the-heart tools for obtaining structural and physiological measurements that are currently used in many of the leading medical institutes in the world. Furthermore, the two centers will initiate another project in the area of bioinformatics to study the genetic bases to some of the common cardiac diseases seen in Egypt. The CIS sees that with its technological and engineering expertise it complements the mission of the AHC and recruits many of the Egyptian skills in a truly interdisciplinary project.