Assoc/Prof Salvatore Pepe is co-Leader of the Heart Research Group at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne. He is a co-Principal Investigator of a recently completed first-in-human clinical safety trial of cord blood cell therapy in neonates with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome undergoing the Norwood-type cardiopulmonary bypass operation. With the primary aim to translate research innovation to clinical and surgical practice, his studies have focused on targeting mitochondrial and cellular metabolism, immune response, and cardiac remodeling in myocardial injury, cardiomyopathy, heart failure, donor heart management in transplantation, and perioperative complications of cardiopulmonary bypass surgery. Current work is aimed at the safe translation of cell therapy protocols to augment cardiac intervention outcomes in congenital and acquired heart conditions. He has previously held appointments at the National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health Intramural Research Program, Johns Hopkins Hospital Bayview Campus, Baltimore, USA; the Cardiac Surgical Research Unit, Baker Heart & Diabetes Research Institute, Melbourne; and the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery Heart & Lung Transplant Service, Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, Australia. He is a Fellow of the Cardiac Society of Australia & New Zealand, a Fellow of the American Heart Association, and Past-President of the International Society for Heart Research (Australia & New Zealand Section). He is an Associate Editor of Heliyon–Clinical Research (Elsevier) and Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine-Cardiovascular Biologics and Regenerative Medicine. An Associate Editor of Heart, Lung & Circulation (Elsevier) since 1997, he is the newly appointed Editor-in-Chief, commencing in 2024.