searchers are collaborating to find better solutions to the problems of heart disease for the developing world. Professor Lexin Wang from Charles Sturt University (CSU) in regional New South Wales is working with his colleagues at Liaocheng People’s Hospital in Shandong Province and Guangzhou Red Cross Hospital in Guangdong Province to reduce child mortality and recovery times. In the past decade, international teams managed by Professor Wang, who leads the Cardiovascular Research Group at CSU, have developed innovative keyhole surgery solutions to two congenital heart problems—hole in the heart and long QT syndrome, a nerve condition that leads to an irregular heartbeat. The new surgical intervention has reduced the death rate in children with these conditions by 95 per cent, and more than halved the post-surgical recovery times. “The work has application across the world because of the huge cost savings that keyhole surgery can bring. The operation is cheaper and simpler than conventional techniques and reduces hospital stays and recovery times. The greatest benefit is in patients from developing countries such as China, as it makes surgery affordable.” “As chief investigator, I bring the team together. We do the clinical trials on patients in hospitals in China, analyse the data and then publish them. We have also had input from thoracic surgeons from Taiwan, Italy and the United States,” says Professor Wang, who trained as a cardiologist at Peking University and Royal Perth Hospital.