Effects of catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation on the biomarker profile

Jeffrey J. Goldberger*, David Green, Firas Rabbat, Sukit Ringwala, Adin Cristian Andrei, Yao Xu, Rod Passman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Following catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation (AF), there are dynamic changes in the atrial myocardium associated with damage to and necrosis of atrial tissue and other procedure related changes in rhythm and anticoagulation. Early time-dependent changes in biomarkers of necrosis, inflammation, and coagulation have been reported. This study examines mid-term (4–8 weeks post-ablation) changes in biomarkers and explores their ability to predict AF recurrence at one-year. Methods: Twenty-seven patients (mean age 65.4 ± 9.7 years, 30% female) undergoing catheter ablation for AF had peripheral venous blood samples obtained at the time of ablation and 4–8 weeks later. All samples were processed to obtain plasma which was frozen for subsequent analysis. Coagulation studies were performed at the Northwestern Special Hemostasis Laboratory: VWF, ADAMTS13, PAI-1, D-dimer, and TAT complexes. A commercial lab analyzed samples for CRP, cystatin C, fibrinogen, galectin, IL-6, MMP-2, myoglobin, NT-proBNP, PAI-1, TIMP-1, TIMP-2, TPA, and VWF. Results: Significant changes were noted with higher levels of ADAMTS13 (p < 0.0001), fibrinogen (p = 0.004), MMP-2 (p = 0.0002), TIMP-2 (p = 0.003), and TPA (p = 0.001) compared to lower levels of TAT (p < 0.0001) and NT-proBNP (p = 0.0001) at follow up post-ablation. One year after ablation, AF had recurred in 11/26 (42%) of patients. None of the biomarker changes predicted the 1-year outcome, and there was no significant association with the use of warfarin versus rivaroxaban. Conclusion: In patients undergoing catheter ablation for AF, there were significant changes in pre- vs post-ablation levels of multiple biomarkers. However, these changes were not associated with 1-year outcome of AF recurrence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)132-137
Number of pages6
JournalPACE - Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2023


  • atrial fibrillation
  • biomarkers
  • catheter ablation
  • thrombus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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