Douglas Sawyer


  • MD, PhD, Cornell University, 1991


I am a physician-scientist with a background in cardiovascular biology, and clinical focus on heart failure.  My research activity has focused on understanding myocardial biology and developing translational studies elucidating how the adult heart maintains and repairs itself, as well as developing therapeutic strategies to enhance myocardial repair after injury.  A major focus of my research has been to understand how neuregulin and the ERBB2 and ERBB4 receptors function in the adult heart to regulate response to injury.  Throughout my career I have worked collaboratively with other physicians and investigators to conduct studies across the continuum from basic to clinical research.  Most recently we were able to conduct a series of studies progressing from cells to small and large animals, and ultimately to humans examining the therapeutic potential of recombinant neuregulin.

I have been an active mentor in academic medicine, having personally mentored many physicians and scientists through various stages of their careers. Over the past 18 years I have served as a mentor for a wide variety of trainees at Boston University, Vanderbilt University, and most recently at Maine Medical Center.

In 2014 I moved to the Maine Medical Center (MMC) and affiliated MMC Research Institute (MMCRI), where a robust clinical cardiology and cardiac surgery programs co-exist with a strong commitment to basic and translational science.  The MMC Cardiology and Cardiothoracic Surgery teams have a long history of success in recruiting to clinical research protocols.  My laboratory continues to pursue both basic investigation over mechanisms for myocardial repair as well as translational studies in humans focused on preventing and treating cardiovascular disease.