Strategic objective

The HERACLES configuration in this fourth phase has been designed with the objective of strengthening the interaction between clinical, epidemiological and basic research groups. An important resource for this purposes is the high-throughput DNA extraction platform proposed and fully developed by HERACLES from 2006 to 2012, as well as COLMAH, which took shape during earlier phases of the HERACLES programme. COLMAH provides the largest collection of human artery tissue samples for the study of gene expression in endothelial and smooth muscle cell cultures. Finally, we will further develop both the “bedside-to-bench” and “bench-to-bedside” strategies established during the 2006-2012 phase, using agreements with the pharmaceutical industry and the commercialization of HERACLES research results.

The research groups that participate in the HERACLES programme, located in Spain’s Autonomous Communities of Aragón, Castilla-La Mancha, Castilla y León, Catalunya, Madrid and Valencia, have a very high level of scientific productivity and possess experience that is both diverse and complementary, which allows a highly multidisciplinary approach to the HERACLES research agenda, which is centred on the study of the mechanisms of arterial hypertension, the associated cardiovascular diseases, and the factors that function as facilitators or triggers.

Strategic plan and scientific objective

The central scientific objective of the HERACLES programme is to pursue the study of the genetic and molecular mechanisms of vascular tone (smooth muscle cells and arterial endothelium) and the diseases with a direct etiological relationship to arterial hypertension: ischemic heart disease, cardiac arrhythmias and cerebrovascular accident, and to attempt to define the appropriate prevention strategies. There are three specific objectives:

  • Objective 1: Improvement and development of cardiovascular risk functions for primary prevention.
  • Objective 2: Development of predictive functions for prognosis of acute coronary syndrome, acute cerebrovascular disease and congestive heart failure.
  • Objective 3: Impact of metabolic pathways of arterial hypertension on arteriosclerosis and related diseases.

An initiative of

Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional IMIM - Parc de Salut Mar