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

Illustration of a woman
Pioneering heart care

Rebecca Cogswell, M.D., explains how her father's heart condition influenced her career in medicine. Read more.

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Full circle

Masonic Cancer Center researchers are evaluating a unique immunotherapy designed to keep this wily disease from coming back. Learn more.

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A more complete recovery

"Good enough” isn’t good enough for heart surgeon Rosemary Kelly, M.D., when it comes to helping people facing chronic ischemia. Read more.