Dr. Flora Sam is Professor of Medicine at Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM). She is a physician-scientist and is a board certified advanced heart failure cardiologist. Dr. Sam's translational research program investigates mechanisms of myocardial remodeling in heart failure and cardiac hypertrophy. Her laboratory combines efforts in both basic and clinical investigation to advance the understanding of mechanisms of myocardial remodeling in heart failure. Dr. Sam’s dual research focus (animals and humans) allows her use clinical findings from her heart failure population to develop new and testable hypotheses for basic investigation. Mechanisms in her lab are elucidated by using cultured cardiac myocytes (in vitro) and genetically-modified mice (in vivo), to determine the relationship between molecular/cellular events involved in cardiac remodeling and the changes in physiological function that can be assessed at the single cardiac myocyte and whole heart level in genetically-modified mice. Research in her laboratory is focused on three major areas of investigation. 1) Pro-inflammatory and pro-fibrotic mechanisms that mediate cardiac remodeling in the "failing" heart (HFrEF and HFpEF) and in hypertrophy. A major focus is to understand the cardiomyocyte phenotype in hypertrophy and specifically HFpEF (heart failure with preserved ejection fraction). Cross talk between the heart and extracardiac tissues and organs in HFpEF (aka "diastolic heart failure") is being investigated. 2) Investigating the relationship between the extracellular matrix and heart failure in human subjects with cardiac amyloid and scleroderma cardiomyopathy. 3) Studying the actions of adipocyte-derived factors, myokines and cardiokines in both animal and human heart failure.
Dr. Sam is a Fellow of the American Heart (FAHA), the American College of Cardiology (FACC) and the Heart Failure Society of America (FHFSA). She is also an elected Member of the Association of University Cardiologists (AUC). She most recently served as Director, Whitaker Cardiovascular Institute of BUSM. She stepped down on November 30, 2019 to become the Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) of Imbria Pharmaceuticals. In November 2020, Dr. Sam joined Eli Llily where she is Vice President, Medical-Heart Failure & Kidney in Early Phase Cardiovascular Research & Clinical Research- Diabetes, Obesity & Complications. Dr. Sam maintains her academic faculty position at BUSM as Professor of Medicine and PI of the Sam Lab at the WCVI, BUSM and continues her HFpEF research in an NIH-funded lab at the Whitaker Cardiovascular Institute (WCVI), BUSM.