Dr Kenneth Tran
Kenneth Tran is a Research Fellow with the Cardiac Energetics research group at the Auckland Bioengineering Institute. He is currently supported by the Heart Foundation of NZ Research Fellowship and the Marsden Fast-start award from the Royal Society of New Zealand.His research focusses on using bio-instrumentation, experimentation and mathematical modelling to undertand disease mechanisms underlying heart failure, with a particular focus on diabetic heart disease.
Research | Current
My research interest focusses on computational physiology to understand the systems biology of heart muscle bioenergetics. All cellular functions are intricately connected to energy metabolism. This is particularly important for the heart where a constant and adequate supply of energy is required for it to beat continuously. The focus of my research is to understand the mechanisms that link metabolism to excitation-contraction processes in the cardiac myocyte, and to investigate how these mechanisms are perturbed in heart disease.
My research focus on diabetic heart failure is supported by grants from the Health Research Council (Explorer Grant) Heart Foundation of NZ (Research Fellowship) and the Royal Society of NZ (Marsden Fast-start). This work involves collaborations with local and international experts in the fields of cardiac and mitochondrial physiology and mathematical modelling. Experimental data from the work are used to develop a novel model of diabetic cardiac cellular bioenergetics using a bond graph framework to ensure thermodynamic consistency. The models will be used to simulate potential therapeutic treatments to alleviate the effects of diabetes on cardiac function. As with my previous work, all models will be made available in cellML and shared with the community on the Physiome Model Repository.
Teaching | Current
Biomeng 341 - Bioinstrumentation and Design
Current PhD students:
- Jarrah Dowrick, The transient dynamic performance of cardiac muscle during interventions.
- Niloofar Shahidi, Biophysically and Thermodynamically Consistent Modularisation of Physiology.
- Kevin Choi (Masters, 2019), Mechanical testing of chemically-permeabilised cardiac tissues.
- Alison Schroeder (Masters, 2018), Modelling cardiac excitation-contraction mechanics based on trabecula myometry.
- Megan Guidry (Masters, 2016), Modelling cardiac mechano-energetics.
- Lauren Dupuis (Masters, 2014), The mechano-energetics of the heart.
Areas of expertise
- Cardiac mechano-energetics
- Experimental physiology
- Computational modelling
- Cardiac electrophysiology
- 2019 - present: Chair of the ABI Animal Ethics Advisory Committee
- 2019 - present: ABI Research Committee member
- 2019 - present: ABI Postgraduate Advisory Committee member
- 2018 - Organising committee for the International cellML Workshop, March 26-27, Auckland
- 2017 - Organising committee for the International cellML Workshop, April 10-11, Auckland
- 2017 - Organising committee ABI Research Forum, Feb 23, Auckland
- 2015 - Organising committee for the International cellML Workshop, April 8-10, Auckland
Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)
- Guidry, M. E., Nickerson, D. P., Crampin, E. J., Nash, M. P., Loiselle, D. S., & Tran, K. (2020). Insights From Computational Modeling Into the Contribution of Mechano-Calcium Feedback on the Cardiac End-Systolic Force-Length Relationship. FRONTIERS IN PHYSIOLOGY, 1110.3389/fphys.2020.00587
Other University of Auckland co-authors: David Nickerson, Martyn Nash, Denis Loiselle
- Tran, K., Taberner, A. J., Loiselle, D. S., & Han, J.-C. (2020). Energetics Equivalent of the Cardiac Force-Length End-Systolic Zone: Implications forContractility and Economy of Contraction. FRONTIERS IN PHYSIOLOGY, 1010.3389/fphys.2019.01633
Other University of Auckland co-authors: Denis Loiselle, Andrew Taberner, June-Chiew Han
- Pan, M., Gawthrop, P. J., Tran, K., Cursons, J., & Crampin, E. J. (2019). A thermodynamic framework for modelling membrane transporters. Journal of theoretical biology, 481, 10-23. 10.1016/j.jtbi.2018.09.034
Other University of Auckland co-authors: Edmund Crampin
- Pham, T., Zgierski-Johnston, C. M., Tran, K., Taberner, A. J., Loiselle, D. S., & Han, J.-C. (2019). Energy expenditure for isometric contractions of right and left ventricular trabeculae over a wide range of frequencies at body temperature. Scientific reports, 9 (1)10.1038/s41598-019-45273-1
Other University of Auckland co-authors: June-Chiew Han, Toan Pham, Denis Loiselle, Andrew Taberner
- Dowrick, J. M., Tran, K., Loiselle, D. S., Nielsen, P. M. F., Taberner, A. J., Han, J.-C., & Ward, M.-L. (2019). The slow force response to stretch: Controversy and contradictions. Acta physiologica (Oxford, England), 226 (1)10.1111/apha.13250
Other University of Auckland co-authors: June-Chiew Han, Denis Loiselle, Poul Nielsen, Marie-Louise Ward, Andrew Taberner, Jarrah Dowrick
- Taberner, A., Nielsen, P., Johnston, C., Anderson, A., Cheuk, M., Garrett, A., ... Ruddy, B. (2019). A Dynamometer for Nature's Engines. IEEE INSTRUMENTATION & MEASUREMENT MAGAZINE, 22 (2), 10-16. 10.1109/MIM.2019.8674628
Other University of Auckland co-authors: Denis Loiselle, Andrew Taberner, Poul Nielsen, Bryan Ruddy, Toan Pham, June-Chiew Han, Jarrah Dowrick
- Han, J.-C., Pham, T., Taberner, A. J., Loiselle, D. S., & Tran, K. (2019). Solving a century-old conundrum underlying cardiac force-length relations. American journal of physiology. Heart and circulatory physiology, 316 (4), H781-H793. 10.1152/ajpheart.00763.2018
Other University of Auckland co-authors: June-Chiew Han, Toan Pham, Andrew Taberner, Denis Loiselle
- Pan, M., Gawthrop, P. J., Tran, K., Cursons, J., & Crampin, E. J. (2019). A Thermodynamic Framework for Modelling Membrane Transporters. Paper presented at 63rd Annual Meeting of the Biophysical-Society, Baltimore, MD. 2 March - 6 March 2019. BIOPHYSICAL JOURNAL. (pp. 1). 10.1016/j.bpj.2018.11.2263