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Title: Interactions between activation and repolarisation in predisposition towards cardiac arrhythmia
Author: Finlay, M.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5362 2495
Awarding Body: University College London (University of London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2014
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The lethal cardiac arrhythmias ventricular fibrillation (VF) and ventricular tachycardia (VT) are a leading cause of death in heart disease. We hypothesised that dynamic activation and repolarisation interactions will vary according to autonomic tone and the nature of the myocardial substrate as affected by disease states. This hypothesis was tested in a series of human and murine experiments. Incorporation of data from human electrophysiological studies into a linear computer model was able to predict activation dynamics of sequential extrastimuli. This served as a validation of the concept of dynamic interactions between activation and repolarisation in man. A human model of mental stress demonstrated that activation and repolarisation dynamics are altered by intrinsic autonomic stimulation. Specifically, a reduction in activation potential duration and an increase in dispersion of repolarisation occurred at short coupling intervals during stress. A weak increase in conduction velocity and excitability was also observed. Patients with early-stage arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) were seen to exhibit conduction changes prior to the onset of structural disease. This was used to determine potential diagnostic criteria based on surface ECG correlates of intracardiac observations. These criteria are able to distinguish early ARVC from benign right ventricular outflow tract tachycardia. Finally, the mechanism of modulation of tissue level activation dynamics were further studied using a novel thin-tissue slice murine model. Conduction velocity and excitability were modulated by both sympathetic and parasympathetic stimuli, parasympathetic modulation is demonstrated to be dependent on the Gαi2 regulatory pathway at the tissue level. The tissue slice method provides a novel tissue-level platform for the study of cardiac electrophysiology in genetically modified mice. In conclusion, this work demonstrates that modulations of activation and repolarisation dynamics are seen in pro-arrhythmic states, specifically in sympathetically active states and in arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available