Fondation Coeur - Daniel Wagner

under the aegis of Fondation de Luxembourg

The foundation's objective is to support scientific research in the area of cardiovascular diseases and to raise awareness among the public on this topic.


Fondation Coeur - Daniel Wagner was created by two Luxembourgish doctors in memory of Dr. Daniel Wagner, a highly respected Luxembourg cardiologist who passed away unexpectedly last year.


The aim of the recently created foundation is to support scientific research in cardiovascular diseases. The foundation is also engaged in promoting and raising awareness among the general public on the specific risks posed by these diseases. Fondation Coeur - Daniel Wagner is giving priority to research carried out in the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg.


The Management Committee of the Fondation Coeur -  Daniel Wagner is composed of Mr Gaston Reinesch, Chairman, Dr Jean Beissel, Dr Charles Delagardelle, Dr Kerstin Wagner, and Mrs Tonika Hirdman.




The life of Professor Daniel WAGNER


29 May 1963: born in Esch/Alzette

1988: graduates in Medicine in Giessen

1988-1992: Internal Medicine in Bad Nauheim and Munich

1992-1993: PhD in Molecular Biology in Brussels

1993-1998: training in General and Interventional Cardiology in Pittsburgh, USA

1999-2015: Cardiologist at Centre Hospitalier de Luxembourg (CHL)

2003: Head of Interventional Cardiology

2003: establishes the Cardiology Research Laboratory

2010-2016: Head of CHL Cardiology Department

2016: appointed Professor of Cardiology in Lausanne

5 July 2017: dies in Lausanne 


For 18 years, from 1999-2017, Daniel made an extraordinary impact on the medical world and on cardiology in Luxembourg in particular. His career as a clinical and interventional cardiologist as well as his research activities bear witness to his determination to succeed in cardiology, a branch of medicine that fascinated him and to which he was dedicated. In 2016, he was the first cardiologist from Luxembourg to become a Professor of Cardiology at an internationally renowned university, namely Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV) in Lausanne.


He gave the Cardiology Department of the Centre Hospitalier de Luxembourg (CHL) fresh impetus from 1999, adding to its already excellent reputation. While there was initially a certain wariness towards him given the perception of him as someone influenced by the United States, Daniel quickly won over his colleagues at CHL as well as other cardiologists in Luxembourg. His trademark was a welcoming smile which helped him quickly gain the trust of his colleagues, the nursing and technical staff and, not least, his many patients.


He had many exceptional qualities: discipline, diligence, commitment, technical skill, excellent work organisation, open-mindedness, total dedication to his patients, tolerance and respect for others. Without any fanfare, he gradually introduced the system of training from which he had benefited in the United States. He set a superb example to young cardiologists during their training, offering weekly classes before the morning staff meetings.


His renown in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg soon spread and, after a few years, he became the "primus inter pares", the focal point for cardiology in Luxembourg. His open mind allowed him to be a genuine advocate for integration in a medical world where certain sensitivities could prevent effective collaboration. His promotion of good relations between hospitals led to the founding of the Luxembourg Acute Myocardial Infarction Registry (known as "LUCKY") at his research laboratory; this would become an international reference resource.


In addition to clinical research, since his PhD, Daniel had also worked on basic research. He wrote his thesis on adenosine in Brussels and Pittsburgh in the United States. In Pittsburgh he worked in the research laboratory of the renowned Professor Arthur Feldman who would become his mentor and friend.


Even though Professor Feldman considered that it was not possible to be both a committed clinician and the director of a research laboratory, Daniel followed his own route and launched an ambitious project to establish the first basic cardiology research laboratory in Luxembourg in 2003. In just a few years, the laboratory achieved genuine success. Initially there were just two employees, but by 2012 this number had increased to more than 15. In excess of 80 scientific articles have been published in internationally renowned journals and countless presentations given at European and American conferences. Among the many publications, a highlight was the work on matrix metalloproteinases as new markers of cardiac remodelling after infarction. Research to find new therapeutic options has subsequently started using zebrafish.


Daniel was very successful in conveying his enthusiasm and commitment to his colleagues. But he did not only hit the headlines in Luxembourg, his reputation quickly spread beyond the borders of our small country. Ultimately he received an offer of a professorship at CHUV, the renowned European university based in Lausanne. He took up this new challenge in January 2017 while battling a severe illness that had commenced six months earlier.


Despite his courage and optimism, he succumbed to his illness on 5 July 2017 before he could make an impression on this new challenge. 


Daniel lived for cardiology but he was also an exemplary husband and father.


This extraordinary man made many friends in Luxembourg and all around the world.


He will not be forgotten.


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