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Keywords:

  • Wolff-Parkinson-White;
  • preexcitation;
  • genetics;
  • mutations;
  • cardiomyopathy

Family studies, and more recent molecular genetic investigations, indicate that the Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome and associated preexcitation disorders can have a substantial genetic component. Because preexcitation disorders are sometimes inherited as single gene disorders, key mechanistic insights can be gained that are expected to be relevant also to the more common multifactorial forms of these traits. Potentially, such insights will inform the future management of these conditions. Where WPW is inherited as a familial trait, with or without associated cardiac defects or a systemic syndrome, there are clinical genetic ramifications that are already of practical importance.