Effect of cardioactive drugs on the developing rat heart


Cardioactive drugs are used during pregnancy to alleviate heart conditions but may affect the heart of the developing fetus.


Dr Helen Ritchie

Research Location

Cumberland - School of Medical Sciences

Program Type



Craniofacial abnormalities such as cleft lip constitutes almost half of all major facial malformation its incidence ranges from 1:500- 2000 live births (dependent on race). We have developed a rat model of cleft lip that is caused by subjecting the developing fetus to hypoxic conditions. Hypoxia and subsequent rebound oxygenation is suspected of causes free radical release. It is suspected that these free radicals cause tissue damage. We are examining the effect of cardioactive drugs used during pregnancy on the developing fetal heart.

Additional Information

Techniques used in this project: whole rat embryo culture, histology, in vivo teratology, immunohistochemistry

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Developmental toxicology, cardiovascular development, craniofacial development, Cardiovascular & respiratory diseases, Therapeutics & adverse drug effects, Heart & circulation, Pharmacology & therapeutics

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 161