The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) has consistently recognized and supported efforts to advance population, clinical, and basic science research in atrial fibrillation (AF). In 2008, the NHLBI convened an expert panel to identify gaps and to recommend research strategies focused on improving AF prevention. To engage the scientific community in an effort to identify contemporary research priorities and opportunities in AF, the NHLBI recently commissioned a series of webinar-based workshops.
The inaugural webinar in the NHLBI Virtual Workshop Series on Atrial Fibrillation (AF) focused on five topic areas in AF catheter ablation: 1) emerging technologies, 2) how cardiac structure and function influence the success of AF ablation, 3) subgroups of AF patients who may benefit more and less from ablation, 4) platforms to advance clinical research, and 5) whether a sham ablation randomized trial could be conducted in the US. Internationally recognized experts discussed current state of the art and provided recommendations to advance research to optimize the use of and outcomes following AF catheter ablation. The webinar attendees included selected participants including patient advocates who enriched discussion.
The publication of the webinar, Research Needs and Priorities for Catheter Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation, is available.
Supplemental materials for the preparation and publication of the webinar will be provided when available.
Introduction Webinar 1 - Ablation
Pierre Jais (Speaker) and Paul Wang (Discussant)
- Particle therapy
- Alternative energy sources
- High density mapping
- Electroporation (Electrotransfer)
Enabling Platforms to Advance Atrial Fibrillation Clinical Research
Sana Al-Khatib (Speaker) and Andrea Russo (Discussant)
- AF Registry
- AF Trial Network
- Pragmatic Research Design
- Electronic Data Platform
Given the placebo effect with procedures/medications, can a sham ablation RCT be conducted in the US? What specific outcomes benefit from ablation?
Jonathan Piccini (Speaker) and Hugh Calkins (Discussant)
- Recurrent A-fib
- A-fib Burden
- Quality of life
- Feasibility, Ethics
What phenotypes benefit most from ablation?
Douglas L. Packer (Speaker) and Anne Curtis (Discussant)
Is there a role for ablation in HF and AF?
- HF Phenotype (e.g., HFpEF, HFrEF)
- Neural Mechanisms
Does outcome vary with structural heart disease or MRI fibrosis?
What phenotypes benefit less from ablation?
Mina Chung (Speaker) and Al Buxton (Discussant)
- Older patients
- Long-standing AF
- High stroke burden?