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Is genetics useful for predicting outcomes in patients with atrial fibrillation?

Professor Diane Fatkin, Institution: University of New South Wales

2020 Predictive Modelling Strategic Grant

Years funded: 2021-2024

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a major public health problem with one in three individuals developing AF during their lifetime, many of whom will experience stroke, heart failure or early death. A person’s genetic make-up is an important determinant of AF susceptibility, but genetic information is not part of current patient care.

We hypothesise that genetic factors influence whether or not a person will develop AF and how they respond to treatment. Here we will use cutting-edge tools for rapid low-cost genetic analyses of AF patient cohorts that will enable us, for the first time, to look at single gene mutations, genetic risk scores, and genetic effects on anti-arrhythmic drug metabolism. The cost and outcomes of genetic testing, and patient preferences for testing will also be assessed.

This project will break new ground for patients with AF in Australia and beyond. It will generate new knowledge about genetic causes of AF, how genetics might predict complications such as heart failure and stroke, and whether genetics is useful for tailoring AF drug and ablation therapies. Our data will define high risk patient subsets and have direct implications for the screening and clinical management of family members.

 

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