Purpose of review: Genetic factors contribute to overall heart failure risk, but specific risk alleles are only beginning to be identified. Here, new results from candidate gene and genome-wide polymorphism studies that have delineated associations between polymorphic genes and heart failure are reviewed in the context of their likely clinical translation and implementation. Recent findings: Recent data support and extend consequences of genetically variant β1-adrenergic receptors and G-protein receptor kinase 5 on heart failure. New genome-wide and subgenome-wide studies have identified unexpected genetic modifiers of heart failure risk and outcome, suggesting that determinants of heart failure onset and progression are distinct, and pointing to unexpected genetic interactions in cardiac disease. Summary: Advances in high-throughput genotyping and resequencing herald a rapid expansion of genomic information in heart failure. With identification of putative heart failure risk alleles, the next step will be prospective clinical trials evaluating the benefits of genotype-directed heart failure management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)204-208
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent Opinion in Cardiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2011


  • candidate gene
  • genome-wide association study
  • heart failure
  • polymorphisms


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