Atrial Fibrillation (AF) is the most prevalent arrhythmia in human populations with a growing world-wide burden. The present review aimed to determine the genetic factors in the development of AF.
The present study included the studies, which probed into the genetic factors of AF. The searches were done in PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, Embase, and Google Scholar databases. The review highlighted two main directions of AF genetic studies; i.e., rare mutations in structural genes, including potassium and sodium channels, connexins, and transcription factors genes, and genome-wide association studies of significant common variants. The main focus was on the most important loci confirmed by numerous studies with both rare and common variants.
Research on the genetic basis of AF has remained a hot topic due to its growing worldwide burden. Recent advances in genome-wide studies have provided the ground for gaining insight on minor genetic factors with cumulative effects, which are distributed more widely than previously known rare mutations.
Far more potential candidate genes and/or regulatory sequences have been already discovered, and there are much more to be explored in the near future. This will potentially result in a better understanding of AF and other arrhythmic conditions as well as their impacts on human health, and will provide new ways to improve diagnostics and treatment strategies.
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