The Cardiovascular Physiology and Surgery Core

Overview of Services

The Cardiovascular Physiology and Surgery Core is available to provide the Johns Hopkins community and beyond three types of cardiovascular procedures on small animals, including, but not limited to, mouse and rat: echocardiography, survival surgery, and hemodynamics. Other procedures may be possible after discussion with the core surgeons. Within each of these three areas, there are several different specific techniques and procedures that will be offered. Echocardiograpy: Functional assessment of the heart and major blood vessels is provided by this service. Images are generated using one of two systems -- an Accuson Sequioa echo-Doppler system or a state-of-the-art Visual-Sonics 2100 imaging system. The first is useful for routine M-mode and 2-D imaging, and for flow Doppler assessments. The latter provides higher resolution imaging and also has tissue Doppler capabilities, including speckle tracking for regional strain analysis. Functional imaging is also available to assess aortic diameter and wall thickening, flow in the aorta to assess vascular stiffening (pulse wave velocity, velocity time integral used to determine cardiac output, etc.). Survival Surgery: We provide a variety of surgically generated heart disease models for use in mice or rats. This includes aortic or pulmonary artery banding for pressure-overload, myocardial infarction or ischemic reperfusion models of the left ventricle, and osmotic pump implantation for delivery of pharmaceuticals. Pressure-Volume Loops: Analysis of right or left heart function is possible by inserting a miniature pressure-volume catheter into the relevant ventricle to measure in situ cardiac function using pressure-volume relationships. This is used to assess ventricular pressures, systolic and diastolic function, relaxation rates, filling rates, load-independent contractility paramenters, disatolic compliance, and other indexes. These studies are not designed to be survival surgeries. Chronic Electrocardiographic Telemetry: Electrocardiographic recordings from implantable transmitters for multiple days, if needed, are available via this service.

Dear Users and PIs,
The Cardiovascular Physiology and Surgery Core will remain open today and tomorrow, and will be closed beginning Wednesday, March 18 due to the COVID19 situation.  All reservations are cancelled through March 31, 2020. For now we are leaving April 1st open, subject to JHU announcements.  Please stay safe and healthy!
Dr. David Kass
Nadan Wang
Missy Leppo


David Kass, Professor Program Chairman

Nadan Wang, Lab Manager/Director

Michelle "Missy" Leppo, Surgical Technician

Location and hours of operation


Monday - Friday, 9am - 5pm 

Monday - Friday, 8am - 4pm

720 Rutland Avenue. Baltimore, MD 21205
Room: Ross 868

720 Rutland Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21205
Room: Ross 812

Links and Resources



Name Role Phone Email Location
Michelle "Missy" Leppo
Surgical Technician
Ross 812
Nadan Wang
Ross 868
David Kass
Program Chairman
Ross 858