February 28, 2018: Over 400 people donated more than $70,000 to support heart research and help fill Dr. Paul Janssen's Ohio Stadium replica with LEGO® minifigures! The stadium is leaving the Richard M. Ross Heart Hospital, but it's never too late to give to support lifesaving heart and vascular research at Ohio State. Donate today!
Dr. Paul Janssen’s inquisitiveness has been central to his life’s work researching how the heart functions.
That same curiosity about how things fit together has been the driving force behind his hobby, one that now helps further his research at the Davis Heart and Lung Research Institute.
Janssen, PhD, is an avid Lego fan who leads the human heart program at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. Over several years, he has constructed a replica of Ohio Stadium out of more than 1 million LEGO® bricks, and his creation has been on display in the lobby of the Richard M. Ross Heart Hospital at Ohio State.
In exchange for donations to heart research at Ohio State, Janssen placed LEGO® minifigures in the stadium. Proceeds go towards funding research in Ohio State’s heart lab, which does more research on live human heart tissue than any other program in the world.
The program incorporates 17 labs working together to study human hearts that have been donated. The hearts can be kept beating for up to five days, and the collaborative nature of the labs examining a single human heart can help researchers make better correlations about different parts of the heart function together. Those kinds of discoveries can lead to breakthroughs in preventing and treating arrhythmia, cardiac disease and heart failure.