The pathophysiology of sudden cardiac death (SCD) remains incompletely understood. Genetic mutations can create a favorable substrate for SCD. Our aim is to evaluate the evidence of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) as predictors of SCD. We searched the Medline database (2000 to 2017) and selected all case-control or cohort studies that reported associations between SNPs and SCD. Our search terms included “polymorphisms” and “sudden death.” We collected the study design, population ethnic background, gene testing strategy, the association between the SNP and SCD, and the cardiovascular comorbidities of the population. Our search yielded 723 studies, of which we included 24 based upon our inclusion criteria. The studies had a total population of 78,165 participants, with a median age of 62.5 years (IQR 56 to 66) and 35% (IQR 13 to 32) were female. Almost all studies were conducted in white patients of European descent and the most commonly used genetic strategy was candidate gene panels. Fifteen of the studies had a case-control design that included SCD patients without known heart disease as the comparison group and the other 9 studies included patients with heart failure and coronary artery disease. The studies evaluated 53 SNPs and the most common genetic loci were SCN5A, RyR2, CASQ2, NOSA1P, and AGTR. SNPs with the 3 strongest statistically significant ORs >1 were: rs6684209 of CASQ2 (odds ratio [OR] 19), rs3814843 of CALM1 (OR 5.5), and rs35594137 of GJA5 (OR 3.6). In Conclusion, many SNPs are associated with SCD, with the strongest associations seen in SNPs of genes related to intracellular calcium handling. These findings were generated primarily using a candidate gene strategy in white patients with European descent.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine