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BACKGROUND - Insight into type 5 long QT syndrome (LQT5) has been limited to case reports and small family series. Improved understanding of the clinical phenotype and genetic features associated with rare variants implicated in LQT5 was sought through an international multicenter collaboration.
METHODS - Patients with either presumed autosomal dominant LQT5 (N = 229) or the recessive Type 2 Jervell and Lange-Nielsen syndrome (N = 19) were enrolled from 22 genetic arrhythmia clinics and 4 registries from 9 countries. variants were evaluated for ECG penetrance (defined as QTc >460 ms on presenting ECG) and genotype-phenotype segregation. Multivariable Cox regression was used to compare the associations between clinical and genetic variables with a composite primary outcome of definite arrhythmic events, including appropriate implantable cardioverter-defibrillator shocks, aborted cardiac arrest, and sudden cardiac death.
RESULTS - A total of 32 distinct rare variants were identified in 89 probands and 140 genotype positive family members with presumed LQT5 and an additional 19 Type 2 Jervell and Lange-Nielsen syndrome patients. Among presumed LQT5 patients, the mean QTc on presenting ECG was significantly longer in probands (476.9±38.6 ms) compared with genotype positive family members (441.8±30.9 ms, <0.001). ECG penetrance for heterozygous genotype positive family members was 20.7% (29/140). A definite arrhythmic event was experienced in 16.9% (15/89) of heterozygous probands in comparison with 1.4% (2/140) of family members (adjusted hazard ratio [HR] 11.6 [95% CI, 2.6-52.2]; =0.001). Event incidence did not differ significantly for Type 2 Jervell and Lange-Nielsen syndrome patients relative to the overall heterozygous cohort (10.5% [2/19]; HR 1.7 [95% CI, 0.3-10.8], =0.590). The cumulative prevalence of the 32 variants in the Genome Aggregation Database, which is a human database of exome and genome sequencing data from now over 140 000 individuals, was 238-fold greater than the anticipated prevalence of all LQT5 combined (0.238% vs 0.001%).
CONCLUSIONS - The present study suggests that putative/confirmed loss-of-function variants predispose to QT prolongation, however, the low ECG penetrance observed suggests they do not manifest clinically in the majority of individuals, aligning with the mild phenotype observed for Type 2 Jervell and Lange-Nielsen syndrome patients.
BACKGROUND - Male hypogonadism, arising from a range of etiologies including androgen-deprivation therapies (ADTs), has been reported as a risk factor for acquired long-QT syndrome (aLQTS) and torsades de pointes (TdP). A full description of the clinical features of aLQTS associated with ADT and of underlying mechanisms is lacking.
METHODS - We searched the international pharmacovigilance database VigiBase for men (n=6 560 565 individual case safety reports) presenting with aLQTS, TdP, or sudden death associated with ADT. In cardiomyocytes derived from induced pluripotent stem cells from men, we studied electrophysiological effects of ADT and dihydrotestosterone.
RESULTS - Among subjects receiving ADT in VigiBase, we identified 184 cases of aLQTS (n=168) and/or TdP (n=68; 11% fatal), and 99 with sudden death. Of the 10 ADT drugs examined, 7 had a disproportional association (reporting odds ratio=1.4-4.7; <0.05) with aLQTS, TdP, or sudden death. The minimum and median times to sudden death were 0.25 and 92 days, respectively. The androgen receptor antagonist enzalutamide was associated with more deaths (5430/31 896 [17%]; <0.0001) than other ADT used for prostate cancer (4208/52 089 [8.1%]). In induced pluripotent stem cells, acute and chronic enzalutamide (25 µM) significantly prolonged action potential durations (action potential duration at 90% when paced at 0.5 Hz; 429.7±27.1 (control) versus 982.4±33.2 (acute, <0.001) and 1062.3±28.9 ms (chronic; <0.001), and generated afterdepolarizations and/or triggered activity in drug-treated cells (11/20 acutely and 8/15 chronically). Enzalutamide acutely and chronically inhibited delayed rectifier potassium current, and chronically enhanced late sodium current. Dihydrotestosterone (30 nM) reversed enzalutamide electrophysiological effects on induced pluripotent stem cells.
CONCLUSIONS - QT prolongation and TdP are a risk in men receiving enzalutamide and other ADTs.
CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION - URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT03193138.
The QT interval, a global index of ventricular repolarization, varies among individuals and is influenced by diverse physiologic and pathophysiologic stimuli such as gender, age, heart rate, electrolyte concentrations, concomitant cardiac disease, and other diseases such as diabetes. Many drugs produce a small but reproducible effect on QT interval but in rare instances this is exaggerated and marked QT prolongation can provoke the polymorphic ventricular tachycardia 'torsades de pointes', which can cause syncope or sudden cardiac death. The generally accepted common mechanism whereby drugs prolong QT is block of a key repolarizing potassium current in heart, IKr, generated by expression of KCNH2, also known as HERG. Thus, evaluation of the potential that a new drug entity may cause torsades de pointes has relied on exposure of normal volunteers or patients to drug at usual and high concentrations, and on assessment of IKr block in vitro. More recent work, focusing on anticancer drugs with QT prolonging liability, is defining new pathways whereby drugs can prolong QT. Notably, the in vitro effects of some tyrosine kinase inhibitors to prolong cardiac action potentials (the cellular correlate of QT) can be rescued by intracellular phosphatidylinositol 3,4,5-trisphosphate, the downstream effector of phosphoinositide 3-kinase. This finding supports a role for inhibition of this enzyme, either directly or by inhibition of upstream kinases, to prolong QT through mechanisms that are being worked out, but include enhanced inward 'late' sodium current during the plateau of the action potential. The definition of non-IKr-dependent pathways to QT prolongation will be important for assessing risk, not only with anticancer therapies but also with other QT prolonging drugs and for generating a refined understanding how variable activity of intracellular signalling systems can modulate QT and associated arrhythmia risk.
Published on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology. All rights reserved. © The Author(s) 2019. For permissions, please email: email@example.com.
OBJECTIVE - A prolonged QTc (LQT) is a surrogate for the risk of torsade de pointes (TdP). QTc interval duration is influenced by sex hormones: oestradiol prolongs and testosterone shortens QTc. Drugs used in the treatment of breast cancer have divergent effects on hormonal status.
METHODS - We performed a disproportionality analysis using the European database of suspected adverse drug reaction (ADR) reports to evaluate the reporting OR (ROR χ) of LQT, TdP and ventricular arrhythmias associated with selective oestrogen receptor modulators (SERMs: tamoxifen and toremifene) as opposed to aromatase inhibitors (AIs: anastrozole, exemestane and letrozole). When the proportion of an ADR is greater in patients exposed to a drug (SERMs) compared with patients exposed to control drug (AIs), this suggests an association between the specific drug and the reaction and is a potential signal for safety. Clinical and demographic characterisation of patients with SERMs-induced LQT and ventricular arrhythmias was performed.
RESULTS - SERMs were associated with higher proportion of LQT reports versus AIs (26/8318 vs 11/14851, ROR: 4.2 (2.11-8.55), p<0.001). SERMs were also associated with higher proportion of TdP and ventricular arrhythmia reports versus AIs (6/8318 vs 2/14851, ROR: 5.4 (1.29-26.15), p:0.02; 16/8318 vs 12/14851, ROR: 2.38 (1.15-4.94), p:0.02, respectively). Mortality was 38% in patients presenting ventricular arrhythmias associated with SERMs.
CONCLUSIONS - SERMs are associated with more reports of drug-induced LQT, TdP and ventricular arrhythmias compared with AIs. This finding is consistent with oestradiol-like properties of SERMs on the heart as opposed to effects of oestrogen deprivation and testosterone increase induced by AIs.
TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER - NCT03259711.
© Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2018. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.
Mutations that induce loss of function (LOF) or dysfunction of the human KCNQ1 channel are responsible for susceptibility to a life-threatening heart rhythm disorder, the congenital long QT syndrome (LQTS). Hundreds of mutations have been identified, but the molecular mechanisms responsible for impaired function are poorly understood. We investigated the impact of 51 KCNQ1 variants with mutations located within the voltage sensor domain (VSD), with an emphasis on elucidating effects on cell surface expression, protein folding, and structure. For each variant, the efficiency of trafficking to the plasma membrane, the impact of proteasome inhibition, and protein stability were assayed. The results of these experiments combined with channel functional data provided the basis for classifying each mutation into one of six mechanistic categories, highlighting heterogeneity in the mechanisms resulting in channel dysfunction or LOF. More than half of the KCNQ1 LOF mutations examined were seen to destabilize the structure of the VSD, generally accompanied by mistrafficking and degradation by the proteasome, an observation that underscores the growing appreciation that mutation-induced destabilization of membrane proteins may be a common human disease mechanism. Finally, we observed that five of the folding-defective LQTS mutant sites are located in the VSD S0 helix, where they interact with a number of other LOF mutation sites in other segments of the VSD. These observations reveal a critical role for the S0 helix as a central scaffold to help organize and stabilize the KCNQ1 VSD and, most likely, the corresponding domain of many other ion channels.
The acquired and congenital forms of long QT syndrome represent 2 distinct but clinically and genetically intertwined disorders of cardiac repolarization characterized by the shared final common pathway of QT interval prolongation and risk of potentially life-threatening arrhythmias. Over the past 2 decades, our understanding of the spectrum of genetic variation that (1) perturbs the function of cardiac ion channel macromolecular complexes and intracellular calcium-handling proteins, (2) underlies acquired/congenital long QT syndrome susceptibility, and (3) serves as a determinant of QT interval duration in the general population has grown exponentially. In turn, these molecular insights led to the development and increased utilization of clinically impactful genetic testing for congenital long QT syndrome. However, the widespread adoption and potential misinterpretation of the 2015 American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics variant classification and reporting guidelines may have contributed unintentionally to the reduced reporting of common genetic variants, with compelling epidemiological and functional evidence to support a potentially proarrhythmic role in patients with congenital and acquired long QT syndrome. As a result, some genetic testing reports may fail to convey the full extent of a patient's genetic susceptibility for a potentially life-threatening arrhythmia to the ordering healthcare professional. In this white paper, we examine the current classification and reporting (or lack thereof) of potentially proarrhythmic common genetic variants and investigate potential mechanisms to facilitate the reporting of these genetic variants without increasing the risk of diagnostic miscues.
© 2018 American Heart Association, Inc.
BACKGROUND - A 27-year-old woman was seen for long QT syndrome. She was found to be a carrier of 2 variants, KCNQ1 Val162Met and KCNH2 Ser55Leu, and both were classified as "pathogenic" by a diagnostic laboratory, in part because of sequence proximity to other known pathogenic variants.
OBJECTIVE - The purpose of this study was to assess the relationship between both the KCNQ1 and KCNH2 variants and clinical significance using protein structure, in vitro functional assays, and familial segregation.
METHODS - We used co-segregation analysis of family, patch clamp in vitro electrophysiology, and structural analysis using recently released cryo-electron microscopy structures of both channels.
RESULTS - The structural analysis indicates that KCNQ1 Val162Met is oriented away from functionally important regions while Ser55Leu is positioned at domains critical for KCNH2 fast inactivation. Clinical phenotyping and electrophysiology study further support the conclusion that KCNH2 Ser55Leu is correctly classified as pathogenic but KCNQ1 Val162Met is benign.
CONCLUSION - Proximity in sequence space does not always translate accurately to proximity in 3-dimensional space. Emerging structural methods will add value to pathogenicity prediction.
Copyright © 2018 Heart Rhythm Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - An emerging standard-of-care for long-QT syndrome uses clinical genetic testing to identify genetic variants of the KCNQ1 potassium channel. However, interpreting results from genetic testing is confounded by the presence of variants of unknown significance for which there is inadequate evidence of pathogenicity.
METHODS AND RESULTS - In this study, we curated from the literature a high-quality set of 107 functionally characterized KCNQ1 variants. Based on this data set, we completed a detailed quantitative analysis on the sequence conservation patterns of subdomains of KCNQ1 and the distribution of pathogenic variants therein. We found that conserved subdomains generally are critical for channel function and are enriched with dysfunctional variants. Using this experimentally validated data set, we trained a neural network, designated Q1VarPred, specifically for predicting the functional impact of KCNQ1 variants of unknown significance. The estimated predictive performance of Q1VarPred in terms of Matthew's correlation coefficient and area under the receiver operating characteristic curve were 0.581 and 0.884, respectively, superior to the performance of 8 previous methods tested in parallel. Q1VarPred is publicly available as a web server at http://meilerlab.org/q1varpred.
CONCLUSIONS - Although a plethora of tools are available for making pathogenicity predictions over a genome-wide scale, previous tools fail to perform in a robust manner when applied to KCNQ1. The contrasting and favorable results for Q1VarPred suggest a promising approach, where a machine-learning algorithm is tailored to a specific protein target and trained with a functionally validated data set to calibrate informatics tools.
© 2017 American Heart Association, Inc.
BACKGROUND - Drug-induced QT interval prolongation, a risk factor for life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias, is a potential side effect of many marketed and withdrawn medications. The contribution of common genetic variants previously associated with baseline QT interval to drug-induced QT prolongation and arrhythmias is not known.
METHODS - We tested the hypothesis that a weighted combination of common genetic variants contributing to QT interval at baseline, identified through genome-wide association studies, can predict individual response to multiple QT-prolonging drugs. Genetic analysis of 22 subjects was performed in a secondary analysis of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial of 3 QT-prolonging drugs with 15 time-matched QT and plasma drug concentration measurements. Subjects received single doses of dofetilide, quinidine, ranolazine, and placebo. The outcome was the correlation between a genetic QT score comprising 61 common genetic variants and the slope of an individual subject's drug-induced increase in heart rate-corrected QT (QTc) versus drug concentration.
RESULTS - The genetic QT score was correlated with drug-induced QTc prolongation. Among white subjects, genetic QT score explained 30% of the variability in response to dofetilide (=0.55; 95% confidence interval, 0.09-0.81; =0.02), 23% in response to quinidine (=0.48; 95% confidence interval, -0.03 to 0.79; =0.06), and 27% in response to ranolazine (=0.52; 95% confidence interval, 0.05-0.80; =0.03). Furthermore, the genetic QT score was a significant predictor of drug-induced torsade de pointes in an independent sample of 216 cases compared with 771 controls (=12%, =1×10).
CONCLUSIONS - We demonstrate that a genetic QT score comprising 61 common genetic variants explains a significant proportion of the variability in drug-induced QT prolongation and is a significant predictor of drug-induced torsade de pointes. These findings highlight an opportunity for recent genetic discoveries to improve individualized risk-benefit assessment for pharmacological therapies. Replication of these findings in larger samples is needed to more precisely estimate variance explained and to establish the individual variants that drive these effects.
CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION - URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01873950.
© 2017 American Heart Association, Inc.