The development of human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology has revitalized the efforts made in the last decade to exploit the potential of human embryonic stem cells (ESCs) for scientific research. In the field of cardiac arrhythmias, the possibility of generating an unlimited amount of patient-specific cardiomyocyte-like cells (iPSC-CMs) has clear advantages compared with the use of ESC-derived cardiac cells. In particular, with the introduction and implementation of the large-scale precision medicine initiative, we anticipate that the iPSC technology will play an important role in the advancement of cardiovascular research and medicine. This platform is not free from technical limitations that must be carefully taken into account; however, the utility of iPSC-CMs in disease modeling and drug testing studies is hardly questionable. Here, we summarize some of the progresses made in the field of iPSC technology applied to inherited cardiac arrhythmias, with particular emphasis on the use of iPSC-CMs for modelling the long QT syndrome and for the development of personalized drug and molecular therapies. The growing role of iPSC technology in the practice of precision medicine will also be discussed.
- Heart disease
- Induced pluripotent stem cells
- Long QT syndrome
- Modifier genes
- Precision medicine