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Gender differences in fibrosis remodeling in patients with long-standing persistent atrial fibrillation


Li, Zhi; Wang, Zengwei; Yin, Zongtao; Zhang, Yuji; Xue, Xiaodong; Han, Jinsong; Zhu, Yan; Zhang, Jian; Emmert, Maximilian Y; Wang, Huishan (2017). Gender differences in fibrosis remodeling in patients with long-standing persistent atrial fibrillation. OncoTarget, 8(32):53714-53729.

Abstract

The success rate of catheter ablation in atrial fibrillation (AF) is known to be lower in females than in males. However, while the exact mechanism for this phenomenon remains to be elucidated, tissue fibrosis may play an important role in this regard. It has been shown that fibrosis promotes AF and its recurrence, thereby substantially reducing the efficacy of catheter ablation in AF patients. Thus, we hypothesized that fibrosis may contribute to gender differences in the outcomes of AF catheter ablation. Here we systematically assessed pulmonary vein sleeves obtained from 166 patients with and without long-standing persistent-AF (LSP-AF) in order to identify gender-specific mechanistic differences in fibrosis remodeling of AF patients. Histological analysis revealed that the female LSP-AF group, rather than its male counterpart, had a higher degree of fibrosis when compared to the NON-AF group. Further analysis using microarray, immunohistochemistry and Western Blot displayed that gender differences in fibrosis remodeling of LSP-AF were mainly due to the inherent differential expression of fibrosis-related genes (n=32) and proteins (n=6). Especially, those related to the TGFβ/Smad3 pathway appeared to be up-regulated in the female LSP-AF group thus promoting an aggravation of fibrosis remodeling. In summary, our data suggest that the aggravation of fibrosis remodeling in women may be an important reason for the low success rate of AF catheter ablation when compared to men. Therefore, inhibiting the TGFβ/Smad3 pathway-mediated fibrosis could represent an interesting target for future therapeutic concepts to improve the success rate of AF catheter ablation in women.

Abstract

The success rate of catheter ablation in atrial fibrillation (AF) is known to be lower in females than in males. However, while the exact mechanism for this phenomenon remains to be elucidated, tissue fibrosis may play an important role in this regard. It has been shown that fibrosis promotes AF and its recurrence, thereby substantially reducing the efficacy of catheter ablation in AF patients. Thus, we hypothesized that fibrosis may contribute to gender differences in the outcomes of AF catheter ablation. Here we systematically assessed pulmonary vein sleeves obtained from 166 patients with and without long-standing persistent-AF (LSP-AF) in order to identify gender-specific mechanistic differences in fibrosis remodeling of AF patients. Histological analysis revealed that the female LSP-AF group, rather than its male counterpart, had a higher degree of fibrosis when compared to the NON-AF group. Further analysis using microarray, immunohistochemistry and Western Blot displayed that gender differences in fibrosis remodeling of LSP-AF were mainly due to the inherent differential expression of fibrosis-related genes (n=32) and proteins (n=6). Especially, those related to the TGFβ/Smad3 pathway appeared to be up-regulated in the female LSP-AF group thus promoting an aggravation of fibrosis remodeling. In summary, our data suggest that the aggravation of fibrosis remodeling in women may be an important reason for the low success rate of AF catheter ablation when compared to men. Therefore, inhibiting the TGFβ/Smad3 pathway-mediated fibrosis could represent an interesting target for future therapeutic concepts to improve the success rate of AF catheter ablation in women.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Cardiovascular Surgery
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Uncontrolled Keywords:atrial fibrillation, , gender differences, , mitral valve, , pulmonary vein, , remodeling
Language:English
Date:8 August 2017
Deposited On:01 Feb 2018 19:48
Last Modified:01 Mar 2018 01:57
Publisher:Impact Journals, LLC
ISSN:1949-2553
OA Status:Hybrid
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.16342
PubMed ID:28881845

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