Colorado State University Engineering Professor Receives American Heart Association Grant to Study Multiple Heart Valve Disease

Note to Reporters: A photo of Lakshmi Prasad Dasi is available with the news release at

Colorado State University scientists will spend the next four years investigating a unified method to test the severity of heart valve diseases for patients who have multiple valve diseases and/or hypertension.

Colorado State engineering Professor Lakshmi Prasad Dasi will lead a $308,000, four-year grant awarded by the American Heart Association as part of its National Scientist Development Program.

Congestive heart failure is one of the leading causes of cardiac-related deaths. Currently, cardiologists use well-established measures to gauge the severity of a patient’s heart valve condition if they only have one type of heart disease. However, if the patient has more than one disease, such as a mild form of aortic valve disease and hypertension, the net potential affect on the heart is less clear.

Researchers will develop and test a new index of severity for multiple valve disease based on the full performance, or energy budget, of the cardiac ventricle and valves together. This new index can potentially offer a unified way to assess the harmful effects of increased workload on the pumping chamber from any combination of diseases that lead to congestive heart failure. Understanding more about multiple valve disease may help improve timing of surgical intervention and/or treatment.

The research will be conducted using two experiments, a countertop artificial beating heart simulator and a cadaver heart-beating model.

“Both are lab experiments without living animals where we can simulate any disease combination. We will simulate and validate the disease model using real-time, high-fidelity pressure and flow measurements and simultaneously perform a thorough accounting of mechanical energy,” Dasi said. “This data will be used to formulate the appropriate and unified severity index that will hopefully be independent of the disease combination.”

Dasi joined Colorado State University in 2009 as an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. At Colorado State, he specializes in cardiovascular fluid mechanics. He received his bachelor’s degree from the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay in India and his doctoral degree from Georgia Institute of Technology.