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Sodium Glucose Co-transporter 2 Inhibitors as a Novel Treatment for Atrial Fibrillation

Dr Kathryn Tiver, Institution: Flinders University

2021 PhD Scholarship  

Years funded: 2022-2024

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common heart rhythm disorder, with a 1 in 4 lifetime risk. It is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. The condition remains incompletely understood, and treatments often fail.

Dr Tiver plans to study sodium glucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors as a novel treatment for AF. SGLT2 inhibitors is a medication class developed and used currently for type 2 diabetes, but trials have surprisingly shown a reduction in the rates of AF, among other benefits.

The research plan is to conduct two randomised controlled trials, to study SGLT2 inhibitors in AF enriched populations; those undergoing cardiac surgery, and those undergoing ablation procedures for AF, an invasive procedure involving cauterisation of areas within the heart via tubes placed via the groin. Dr Tiver will randomly allocate half of the participants to receive SGLT2 inhibitors before and after surgery or ablation, and study the impact on electrical properties of the heart measured during the procedures and the postprocedural rates of AF.

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