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Diagnostic Pitfall and Clinical Characteristics of Variant Versus Wild-Type Transthyretin Amyloid Cardiomyopathy in Asian Population: The Korean Nationwide Cohort Study.

BACKGROUND: Transthyretin amyloidosis cardiomyopathy (ATTR-CM) is an under-recognized cause of heart failure (HF) with clinical phenotypes that vary across regions and genotypes. We sought to characterize the clinical characteristics of ATTR-CM in Asia.

METHODS: Data from a nationwide cohort of patients with ATTR-CM from six major tertiary centres in South Korea were analysed between 2010 and 2021. All patients underwent clinical evaluation, biochemical laboratory tests, echocardiography, and transthyretin (TTR) genotyping at the time of diagnosis. The study population comprised 105 Asian ATTR-CM patients (mean age: 69 years; male: 65.7%, wild-type ATTR-CM: 41.9%).

RESULTS: Among our cohort, 18% of the patients had a mean left ventricular (LV) wall thickness < 12 mm. The diagnosis of ATTR-CM increased notably during the study period (8 [7.6%] during 2010-2013 vs. 22 [21.0%] during 2014-2017 vs. 75 [71.4%] during 2018-2021). Although the duration between symptom onset and diagnosis did not differ, the proportion of patients with HF presenting mild symptoms increased during the study period (25% NYHA class I/II between 2010-2013 to 77% between 2018-2021). In contrast to other international registry data, male predominance was less prominent in wild-type ATTR-CM (68.2%). The distribution of TTR variants was also different from Western countries and from Japan. Asp38Ala was the most common mutation.

CONCLUSION: A nationwide cohort of ATTR-CM exhibited less male predominance, a proportion of patients without increased LV wall thickness, and distinct characteristics of genetic mutations, compared to cohorts in other parts of the world. Our results highlight the ethnic variation in ATTR-CM and may contribute to improving the screening process for ATTR-CM in the Asian population.

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