Welcome to the Heart Centre Biobank

A provincial and international research network aimed at improving outcomes in heart disease through enhanced prevention and treatment.
Happier Children, Healthier Hearts.

Congenital heart defects occur in one out of every 100 newborns. The causes of most forms of congenital heart defects are not known. Today, advances in technology permit us to sequence the entire genome of an individual. This has opened up new opportunities to do large-scale studies to find out which genes cause heart disease in children and adults.

This multi-centre research network has resulted in the establishment of the first Ontario province-wide biorepository and registry of patients with congenital and other forms of heart disease. The network provides a resource to investigators to study the genetic and environmental causes of heart defects and other diseases through the study of DNA, tissue, skin, and blood samples from affected individuals.

The ultimate goal is to develop better ways to diagnose, prevent, and treat disease in children and adults and to improve their overall health and well-being. This exciting initiative, the first of its kind in Ontario, is an example of leveraging our expertise to promote international collaboration and innovation in human disease research.

Seema Mital, MD

Principal Investigator, Heart Centre Biobank Registry


A Validated Model for Sudden Cardiac Death Risk Prediction in Pediatric Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a genetic disease that causes thickening and stiffening of heart muscle and abnormal heart rhythm. It is the most common cause of sudden cardiac death in adolescents and young adults. Sudden death can be prevented through timely use of a life-saving device in the form of an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD). However, many ICDs are implanted in children at low risk who do not need them which exposes them to unnecessary complications from the device.

Through an international collaboration, we developed a risk prediction model that includes factors that are unique to a pediatric population to identify children at high risk for sudden death. By providing an individual risk score for their patient, it will help physicians to engage patients in shared decision making for ICD insertion. Successful use of this tool may increase appropriate use of ICD in those at high risk for sudden death, thereby increasing lives saved.

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New tool to help doctors better prevent sudden cardiac death in children

May 2020

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How genomic research can impact families in real-time

February 2020

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Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction: An enigma being slowly but surely unravelled

December 2019

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High-quality stem cells enable researchers to better study almost any disease

December 2019

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Ted Rogers Centre for heart research celebrates fifth anniversary

November 2019

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Why we must screen early in life for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

August 2019

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Trans-atlantic partnership seeks answers for cyanotic heart disease

April 2019

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Dr. Seema Mital, MD
(Paediatric Site)
Dr. Luis Altamirano, MD
(Adult Site)
Dr. Lynn Bergin, MD
(Paediatric Site)
Dr. Tapas Mondal, MD

Hamilton Health Sciences Centre
(Adult Site)
Dr. Elaine Gordon, MD

Dr. John Smythe, MD
Dr. Erwin Oechslin, MD
Dr. David Chitayat, MD



    Our enrollment is trending up as we continue to recruit new and retain existing participants. Our patient population grows on average by 8% each year. We currently have over 9,900 participants.

  • DATA

    Data use is trending up as we have supported 50 new research studies within the past 3 years with the specimens and data that you have donated to the biobank.


    Family participation is trending up, with 370% increase within this past year. We recognize the importance of studying not just the child with disease but parents to help us determine if the finding is new or passed down. If you are a parent who has not yet participated and would like to, please contact us! Participation can aso be coordinated by mail.

Funding Sources

ted rogers centre for heart research
labatt family heart centre development funds

Contact Us

For any questions, or to find out more, please get in touch with us at anytime.