Ablation Maven Andrea Natale Takes Post at Scripps

April 01, 2010

April 1, 2010 (La Jolla, California) Dr Andre Natale, a pioneer of catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation who also helped lead it into the clinical mainstream, has been named director of interventional electrophysiology at Scripps Clinic, in La Jolla, the institution announced.

But Natale isn't leaving his other positions behind. He remains medical director of the Texas Cardiac Arrhythmia Institute at St David’s Medical Center, Austin. He's also senior medical director of electrophysiology services at California Pacific Medical Center, San Francisco.

His longtime associate Dr J David Burkhardt will also join the cardiac EP group at Scripps while continuing on Natale's team at St David's.

Before going to Austin about two years ago, Natale's name was in the news for his controversial October 2007 exit from the Cleveland Clinic, where he was medical director for the Center for Atrial Fibrillation and the head of pacing and electrophysiology. As heartwire then reported, Natale said the institution had "unilaterally" decided not to renew his contract over an "apparent claim" that he performed procedures away from the Cleveland Clinic without the institution's permission.

"I have been providing training and mentorship to many young practitioners and programs all over the world since I started my career in electrophysiology," Natale wrote at the time, "and in the majority of these situations, during my own vacation time."

He had been on faculty at the Cleveland Clinic since 1999.

Regarding his new responsibilities at Scripps, Natale said to heartwire in an email that he has been "very fortunate to find partners and administrators who believe in sharing this knowledge, and they are all very supportive of this new endeavor that adds more prestige to our network. To be able to share our scientific and clinical knowledge and experience with the EP group at Scripps is a remarkable opportunity based on our mutual vision of scientific integration and collaboration."  

Before his time at the Cleveland Clinic, Natale headed up the cardiovascular physiopathology section at the Italian Air Force's Aerospace Research Centre in Rome (Italy) and was director of the electrophysiology laboratory at Duke University (Durham, NC), and director of the electrophysiology program at the University of Kentucky (Lexington).

Born in Siracusa, Italy, Natale is a graduate of the Medical School of the University of Florence (Italy) and Catholic University School of Cardiology in Rome. He received his clinical training in cardiology at Methodist Hospital, Baylor College (Houston, TX) and the University of Western Ontario (London) and completed further training in cardiac electrophysiology at the University of Wisconsin, Sinai Samaritan Medical Center (Milwaukee).


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