Supporting Heart Health


The University of Minnesota is home to some of the 20th century’s greatest advances in cardiovascular health, including the world’s first successful open-heart surgery using hypothermia and the invention of the battery-operated pacemaker. 

Today University physician-researchers are continuing that tradition of creating revolutionary therapies—for instance, using stem cells to repair damaged hearts and changing care protocols to improve survival rates for those who suffer sudden cardiac arrest.


A place like the University of Minnesota encourages collaboration across areas of expertise that result in groundbreaking ideas. Our medical researchers work with biomedical engineers to create new devices, public health practitioners to prevent disease, and meditation experts to improve outcomes after cardiac events like heart attacks.

Our internationally renowned Visible Heart Laboratory reanimates human hearts that have been deemed unsuitable for transplant but can be used for educational purposes. Its “Atlas of Human Cardiac Anatomy,” a free-access online resource, acts as a clearinghouse for a vast array of information about the human heart and informs research and care around the world.

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What sets us apart

Woman hugging a man, who is wearing a blue shirt.
Every second counts

With timely intervention from his wife and a first-of-its-kind ER-on-wheels, John Sauer survives a dire scenario.

Illustration of a man wearing a suit.
Playing the long game

Learn about a prediction tool developed at the University of Minnesota designed to identify heart disease before it’s too late.

Illustration of the U of M's ECMO truck
Help is on the way

Minnesota’s first mobile emergency department hits the road to help people experiencing cardiac arrest.