Arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy: etiology, diagnosis, and treatment.

Imperial College, London, UK.
Annual review of medicine (Impact Factor: 15.48). 02/2010; 61:233-53. DOI: 10.1146/
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) has a prevalence of at least 1 in 1000, is a leading cause of sudden cardiac death in people aged < or =35 years, and accounts for up to 10% of deaths from undiagnosed cardiac disease in the <65 age group. The classic form of the disease has an early predilection for the right ventricle, but recognition of left-dominant and biventricular subtypes has prompted proposal of the broader term arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy. The clinical profile of the disease bridges the gap between the cardiomyopathies and inherited arrhythmia syndromes. The early "concealed" phase is characterized by propensity toward ventricular tachyarrhythmia in the setting of well-preserved morphology, histology, and ventricular function. As the disease progresses, however, myocyte loss, inflammation, and fibroadiposis become evident. Up to 40% of cases harbor rare variants in genes encoding components of the desmosome, specialized intercellular junctions that confer mechanical strength to cardiac and epithelial tissue, and may also participate in signaling networks. Phenotypic heterogeneity and the nonspecific nature of associated features complicate clinical diagnosis, which requires multipronged cardiovascular investigation rather than a single test. Development of a prospectively validated risk-stratification algorithm for the full disease spectrum remains the foremost clinical challenge.

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    ABSTRACT: Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) is a familial cardiac disease characterized by ventricular arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. It is most frequently inherited as an autosomal dominant trait with incomplete and age-related penetrance and variable clinical expression. The human disease is most commonly associated with a causative mutation in one of several genes encoding desmosomal proteins. We have previously described a spontaneous canine model of ARVC in the boxer dog. We phenotyped adult boxer dogs for ARVC by performing physical examination, echocardiogram and ambulatory electrocardiogram. Genome-wide association using the canine 50k SNP array identified several regions of association, of which the strongest resided on chromosome 17. Fine mapping and direct DNA sequencing identified an 8-bp deletion in the 3' untranslated region (UTR) of the Striatin gene on chromosome 17 in association with ARVC in the boxer dog. Evaluation of the secondary structure of the 3' UTR demonstrated that the deletion affects a stem loop structure of the mRNA and expression analysis identified a reduction in Striatin mRNA. Dogs that were homozygous for the deletion had a more severe form of disease based on a significantly higher number of ventricular premature complexes. Immunofluorescence studies localized Striatin to the intercalated disc region of the cardiac myocyte and co-localized it to three desmosomal proteins, Plakophilin-2, Plakoglobin and Desmoplakin, all involved in the pathogenesis of ARVC in human beings. We suggest that Striatin may serve as a novel candidate gene for human ARVC.
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    ABSTRACT: Background. The relationship between C-reactive protein (CRP) elevation and ventricular tachycardia (VT) in arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia/cardiomyopathy (ARVD/C) is unclear. Methods and Results. In 91 consecutive patients with either ARVD/C with or without VT (cases) or idiopathic right ventricular outflow tract (RVOT) tachycardia (controls), blood sampling were taken to determine CRP levels. In ARVD/C patients with VT, we analyzed the association between VT occurrences and CRP level. Sixty patients had ARVD/C, and 31 had idiopathic RVOT VT. Patients with ARVD/C had a significant higher level of CRP compared to those with RVOT VT (3.5 ± 4.9 versus 1.1 ± 1.2 mg/l, P = .0004). In ARVD/C group, 77%, (n = 46) patients experienced VT. Of these, 37% (n = 17) underwent blood testing for CRP within 24 h after the onset of VT and the remaining 63% (n = 29) after 24 h of VT reduction. CRP level was similar in ARVD/C patients with or without documented VT (3.6 ± 5.1 mg/l versus 3.1 ± 4.1 mg/l, P = .372). However, in patients with ARVD/C and documented VT, CRP was significantly higher when measured within 24 hours following VT in comparison to that level when measured after 24 h (4.9 ± 6.2 mg/l versus 3.0 ± 4.4 mg/l, P = .049). Conclusion. Inflammatory state is an active process in patients with ARVD/C. Moreover, there is a higher level of CRP in patients soon after ventricular tachycardia, and this probably tends to decrease after the event.
    08/2010; 2010. DOI:10.4061/2010/919783