Review Articles

A Contemporary Review on the Genetic Basis of Atrial Fibrillation



Atrial fibrillation is the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia, and affected individuals suffer from increased rates of heart failure, stroke, and death. Despite the enormous clinical burden that it exerts on patients and health care systems, contemporary treatment strategies have only modest efficacy that likely stems from our limited understanding of its underlying pathophysiology. Epidemiological studies have provided unequivocal evidence that the arrhythmia has a substantial heritable component. Subsequent investigations into the genetics underlying atrial fibrillation have suggested that there is considerable interindividual variability in the pathophysiology characterizing the arrhythmia. This heterogeneity may partly account for the poor treatment efficacy of current therapies. Subdividing atrial fibrillation into mechanistic subtypes on the basis of genotype illustrates the heterogeneous nature of the arrhythmia and may ultimately help guide treatment strategies. A pharmacogenetic approach to the management of atrial fibrillation may lead to dramatic improvements in treatment efficacy and improved patient outcomes


atrial fibrillationpharmacogeneticsgenes
  • Year: 2014
  • Volume: 10 Issue: 1
  • Page/Article: 18-24
  • DOI: 10.14797/mdcj-10-1-18
  • Published on 1 Jan 2014
  • Peer Reviewed