Adiposity-associated atrial fibrillation: molecular determinants, mechanisms, and clinical significance

Research output: Contribution to journalReviewResearchpeer-review

Obesity is an important contributing factor to the pathophysiology of atrial fibrillation (AF) and its complications by causing systemic changes, such as altered haemodynamic, increased sympathetic tone, and low-grade chronic inflammatory state. In addition, adipose tissue is a metabolically active organ that comprises various types of fat deposits with discrete composition and localization that show distinct functions. Fatty tissue differentially affects the evolution of AF, with highly secretory active visceral fat surrounding the heart generally having a more potent influence than the rather inert subcutaneous fat. A variety of proinflammatory, profibrotic, and vasoconstrictive mediators are secreted by adipose tissue, particularly originating from cardiac fat, that promote atrial remodelling and increase the susceptibility to AF. In this review, we address the role of obesity-related factors and in particular specific adipose tissue depots in driving AF risk. We discuss the distinct effects of key secreted adipokines from different adipose tissue depots and their participation in cardiac remodelling. The possible mechanistic basis and molecular determinants of adiposity-related AF are discussed, and finally, we highlight important gaps in current knowledge, areas requiring future investigation, and implications for clinical management.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCardiovascular Research
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)614–630
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 2023

    Research areas

  • Adipokines, Atrial fibrillation, Epicardial adipose tissue, Obesity, NLRP3 inflammasome, Subcutaneous adipose tissue, Visceral adipose tissue, HIGH-FAT DIET, PERICARDIAL FAT, CARDIAC-HYPERTROPHY, TISSUE ACCUMULATION, BARIATRIC SURGERY, BODY-COMPOSITION, GENE-EXPRESSION, EPICARDIAL FAT, WEIGHT-LOSS, RISK-FACTOR

ID: 317371761