Collection of Domesticated Animal Hearts for a Tissue Bank

The University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine is currently collecting heart tissue from domestic animals to create a tissue bank to help study heart disease in animals.

Enrollment Status: Currently Enrolling

  • Inclusion Criteria: Animal patients (dog, cat, horse, cow) with heart disease that pass away (by euthanasia or natural death) while at the UF Veterinary Hospital.
  • Procedures: After the patient has passed away, tissues will be collected from multiple areas of the heart and preserved for later use in research studies. Following tissue collection, the patient’s remains will be handled by the option elected by the client (eg. cremation, autopsy, return of remains).
  • Costs: The study will cover the cost of heart tissue collection and preservation.
  • Patients eligible for donations must be UFVH Clients.
  • PI: Margaret Sleeper, VMD, DACVIM (Cardiology)


Typically, animals with cardiac (heart) disease are assessed via echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart) or chest x-rays when they present to a veterinary cardiologist. Obtaining tissue samples of the heart is difficult, however, when performed can be very helpful in evaluating heart disease in many species. Our goal will be to create a cardiac tissue bank at the University of Florida to study unique heart diseases that affect our veterinary patients. The cardiac tissues will be collected from animals with any type of cardiac disease that have recently passed away. The cardiac tissue bank will provide samples that can be used in research studies to further our knowledge of cardiac diseases.


As part of both the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and the Academic Health Center, Veterinary Medicine is dedicated to advancing animal, human and environmental health through teaching, research, extension and patient care.


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