The prognostic impact of reduced glomerular filtration rate (GFR) in chronic heart failure (CHF) is increasingly recognised, but little is known about tubular damage in these patients.
To investigate the prevalence of tubular damage, and its association with GFR, and prognosis in patients with CHF.
Methods and results
In 90 patients with CHF, GFR and effective renal plasma flow (ERPF) were measured ([125I] iothalamate and [131I]hippuran clearances). The tubular markers neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG) and kidney injury molecule 1 (KIM-1) as well as urinary albumin excretion were determined in 24 h urine collections. Mean GFR was 78±26 ml/min/1.73 m2. Urinary NGAL (175 (70—346) mg/g creatinine (gCr)), NAG (12 (6—17) U/gCr) and KIM-1 (277 (188—537) ng/gCr) levels were increased compared with 20 healthy controls (all p<0.001). Urinary NAG, but not NGAL or KIM-1 correlated with GFR (r=−0.34, p=0.001) and ERPF (r=−0.29, p=0.006). Both NAG (r=0.21, p=0.048) and KIM-1 (r=0.23, p=0.033) correlated with plasma N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide levels. Both urinary KIM-1 (HR=1.15 (95% CI 1.02 to 1.30) per 100 ng/gCr increase, p=0.025) and NAG (HR=1.42 (95% CI 1.02 to 1.94) per 5 U/gCr increase, p=0.039), were associated with an increased risk of death or heart failure hospitalisations, independent of GFR.
Tubular damage, as indicated by increased urinary concentrations of NGAL, NAG and KIM-1 is common in patients with CHF and mildly reduced GFR. Both urinary KIM-1 and NAG showed prognostic information additional to GFR. These findings suggest an important role for tubular damage and tubular markers in cardiorenal interaction in heart failure.
Oxidative stress plays a key role in the development of type 2 diabetes mellitus. We previously showed that the circulating antioxidant peroxiredoxin 4 (Prx4) is associated with cardiometabolic risk factors. We aimed to evaluate the association of Prx4 with type 2 diabetes risk in the general population.
We analysed data on 7,972 individuals from the Prevention of Renal and Vascular End-stage Disease (PREVEND) study (49% men, aged 28–75 years) with no diabetes at baseline. Logistic regression models adjusted for age, sex, smoking, waist circumference, hypertension and family history of diabetes were used to estimate the ORs for type 2 diabetes.
During a median follow up of 7.7 years, 496 individuals (288 men; 58%) developed type 2 diabetes. The median (Q1–Q3) Prx4 level was 0.84 (0.53–1.40) U/l in individuals who developed type 2 diabetes and 0.68 (0.43–1.08) U/l in individuals who did not develop type 2 diabetes. For every doubling of Prx4 levels, the adjusted OR (95% CI) for type 2 diabetes was 1.16 (1.05–1.29) in the whole population; by sex, it was 1.31 (1.14–1.50) for men and 1.03 (0.87–1.21) for women. Further adjustment for other clinical measures did not materially change the results. The addition of Prx4 to a validated diabetes risk score significantly improved the prediction of type 2 diabetes in men (p = 0.002 for reclassification improvement).
Our findings suggest that elevated serum Prx4 levels are associated with a higher risk of incident type 2 diabetes. For men, taking Prx4 into consideration can improve type 2 diabetes prediction over a validated diabetes risk score; in contrast, there is no improvement in risk prediction for women.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00125-014-3278-9) contains peer-reviewed but unedited supplementary material, which is available to authorised users.
Epidemiology; Peroxiredoxin 4; Risk prediction; Sex difference; Type 2 diabetes
Blood pressure (BP) is a heritable determinant of risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD). To investigate genetic associations with systolic BP (SBP), diastolic BP (DBP), mean arterial pressure (MAP) and pulse pressure (PP), we genotyped ∼50 000 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that capture variation in ∼2100 candidate genes for cardiovascular phenotypes in 61 619 individuals of European ancestry from cohort studies in the USA and Europe. We identified novel associations between rs347591 and SBP (chromosome 3p25.3, in an intron of HRH1) and between rs2169137 and DBP (chromosome1q32.1 in an intron of MDM4) and between rs2014408 and SBP (chromosome 11p15 in an intron of SOX6), previously reported to be associated with MAP. We also confirmed 10 previously known loci associated with SBP, DBP, MAP or PP (ADRB1, ATP2B1, SH2B3/ATXN2, CSK, CYP17A1, FURIN, HFE, LSP1, MTHFR, SOX6) at array-wide significance (P < 2.4 × 10−6). We then replicated these associations in an independent set of 65 886 individuals of European ancestry. The findings from expression QTL (eQTL) analysis showed associations of SNPs in the MDM4 region with MDM4 expression. We did not find any evidence of association of the two novel SNPs in MDM4 and HRH1 with sequelae of high BP including coronary artery disease (CAD), left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) or stroke. In summary, we identified two novel loci associated with BP and confirmed multiple previously reported associations. Our findings extend our understanding of genes involved in BP regulation, some of which may eventually provide new targets for therapeutic intervention.
Not all obese subjects have an adverse metabolic profile predisposing them to developing type 2 diabetes or cardiovascular disease. The BioSHaRE-EU Healthy Obese Project aims to gain insights into the consequences of (healthy) obesity using data on risk factors and phenotypes across several large-scale cohort studies. Aim of this study was to describe the prevalence of obesity, metabolic syndrome (MetS) and metabolically healthy obesity (MHO) in ten participating studies.
Ten different cohorts in seven countries were combined, using data transformed into a harmonized format. All participants were of European origin, with age 18–80 years. They had participated in a clinical examination for anthropometric and blood pressure measurements. Blood samples had been drawn for analysis of lipids and glucose. Presence of MetS was assessed in those with obesity (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2) based on the 2001 NCEP ATP III criteria, as well as an adapted set of less strict criteria. MHO was defined as obesity, having none of the MetS components, and no previous diagnosis of cardiovascular disease.
Data for 163,517 individuals were available; 17% were obese (11,465 men and 16,612 women). The prevalence of obesity varied from 11.6% in the Italian CHRIS cohort to 26.3% in the German KORA cohort. The age-standardized percentage of obese subjects with MetS ranged in women from 24% in CHRIS to 65% in the Finnish Health2000 cohort, and in men from 43% in CHRIS to 78% in the Finnish DILGOM cohort, with elevated blood pressure the most frequently occurring factor contributing to the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome. The age-standardized prevalence of MHO varied in women from 7% in Health2000 to 28% in NCDS, and in men from 2% in DILGOM to 19% in CHRIS. MHO was more prevalent in women than in men, and decreased with age in both sexes.
Through a rigorous harmonization process, the BioSHaRE-EU consortium was able to compare key characteristics defining the metabolically healthy obese phenotype across ten cohort studies. There is considerable variability in the prevalence of healthy obesity across the different European populations studied, even when unified criteria were used to classify this phenotype.
Harmonization; Obesity; Metabolic syndrome; Cardiovascular disease; Metabolically healthy
Individual participant time-to-event data from multiple prospective epidemiologic studies enable detailed investigation into the predictive ability of risk models. Here we address the challenges in appropriately combining such information across studies. Methods are exemplified by analyses of log C-reactive protein and conventional risk factors for coronary heart disease in the Emerging Risk Factors Collaboration, a collation of individual data from multiple prospective studies with an average follow-up duration of 9.8 years (dates varied). We derive risk prediction models using Cox proportional hazards regression analysis stratified by study and obtain estimates of risk discrimination, Harrell's concordance index, and Royston's discrimination measure within each study; we then combine the estimates across studies using a weighted meta-analysis. Various weighting approaches are compared and lead us to recommend using the number of events in each study. We also discuss the calculation of measures of reclassification for multiple studies. We further show that comparison of differences in predictive ability across subgroups should be based only on within-study information and that combining measures of risk discrimination from case-control studies and prospective studies is problematic. The concordance index and discrimination measure gave qualitatively similar results throughout. While the concordance index was very heterogeneous between studies, principally because of differing age ranges, the increments in the concordance index from adding log C-reactive protein to conventional risk factors were more homogeneous.
C index; coronary heart disease; D measure; individual participant data; inverse variance; meta-analysis; risk prediction; weighting
Individual-level data pooling of large population-based studies across research centres in international research projects faces many hurdles. The BioSHaRE (Biobank Standardisation and Harmonisation for Research Excellence in the European Union) project aims to address these issues by building a collaborative group of investigators and developing tools for data harmonization, database integration and federated data analyses.
Eight population-based studies in six European countries were recruited to participate in the BioSHaRE project. Through workshops, teleconferences and electronic communications, participating investigators identified a set of 96 variables targeted for harmonization to answer research questions of interest. Using each study’s questionnaires, standard operating procedures, and data dictionaries, harmonization potential was assessed. Whenever harmonization was deemed possible, processing algorithms were developed and implemented in an open-source software infrastructure to transform study-specific data into the target (i.e. harmonized) format. Harmonized datasets located on server in each research centres across Europe were interconnected through a federated database system to perform statistical analysis.
Retrospective harmonization led to the generation of common format variables for 73% of matches considered (96 targeted variables across 8 studies). Authenticated investigators can now perform complex statistical analyses of harmonized datasets stored on distributed servers without actually sharing individual-level data using the DataSHIELD method.
New Internet-based networking technologies and database management systems are providing the means to support collaborative, multi-center research in an efficient and secure manner. The results from this pilot project show that, given a strong collaborative relationship between participating studies, it is possible to seamlessly co-analyse internationally harmonized research databases while allowing each study to retain full control over individual-level data. We encourage additional collaborative research networks in epidemiology, public health, and the social sciences to make use of the open source tools presented herein.
Background The extent to which adult height, a biomarker of the interplay of genetic endowment and early-life experiences, is related to risk of chronic diseases in adulthood is uncertain.
Methods We calculated hazard ratios (HRs) for height, assessed in increments of 6.5 cm, using individual–participant data on 174 374 deaths or major non-fatal vascular outcomes recorded among 1 085 949 people in 121 prospective studies.
Results For people born between 1900 and 1960, mean adult height increased 0.5–1 cm with each successive decade of birth. After adjustment for age, sex, smoking and year of birth, HRs per 6.5 cm greater height were 0.97 (95% confidence interval: 0.96–0.99) for death from any cause, 0.94 (0.93–0.96) for death from vascular causes, 1.04 (1.03–1.06) for death from cancer and 0.92 (0.90–0.94) for death from other causes. Height was negatively associated with death from coronary disease, stroke subtypes, heart failure, stomach and oral cancers, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, mental disorders, liver disease and external causes. In contrast, height was positively associated with death from ruptured aortic aneurysm, pulmonary embolism, melanoma and cancers of the pancreas, endocrine and nervous systems, ovary, breast, prostate, colorectum, blood and lung. HRs per 6.5 cm greater height ranged from 1.26 (1.12–1.42) for risk of melanoma death to 0.84 (0.80–0.89) for risk of death from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. HRs were not appreciably altered after further adjustment for adiposity, blood pressure, lipids, inflammation biomarkers, diabetes mellitus, alcohol consumption or socio-economic indicators.
Conclusion Adult height has directionally opposing relationships with risk of death from several different major causes of chronic diseases.
Height; cardiovascular disease; cancer; cause-specific mortality; epidemiological study; meta-analysis
Elevated serum urate concentrations can cause gout, a prevalent and painful inflammatory arthritis. By combining data from >140,000 individuals of European ancestry within the Global Urate Genetics Consortium (GUGC), we identified and replicated 28 genome-wide significant loci in association with serum urate concentrations (18 new regions in or near TRIM46, INHBB, SFMBT1, TMEM171, VEGFA, BAZ1B, PRKAG2, STC1, HNF4G, A1CF, ATXN2, UBE2Q2, IGF1R, NFAT5, MAF, HLF, ACVR1B-ACVRL1 and B3GNT4). Associations for many of the loci were of similar magnitude in individuals of non-European ancestry. We further characterized these loci for associations with gout, transcript expression and the fractional excretion of urate. Network analyses implicate the inhibins-activins signaling pathways and glucose metabolism in systemic urate control. New candidate genes for serum urate concentration highlight the importance of metabolic control of urate production and excretion, which may have implications for the treatment and prevention of gout.
We present an extension of the two-class multifactor dimensionality reduction (MDR) algorithm that enables detection and characterization of epistatic SNP-SNP interactions in the context of a quantitative trait. The proposed Quantitative MDR (QMDR) method handles continuous data by modifying MDR’s constructive induction algorithm to use a T-test. QMDR replaces the balanced accuracy metric with a T-test statistic as the score to determine the best interaction model. We used a simulation to identify the empirical distribution of QMDR’s testing score. We then applied QMDR to genetic data from the ongoing prospective Prevention of Renal and Vascular End-Stage Disease (PREVEND) study.
For patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), guidelines recommend prehospital triage and direct referral to a percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI)-capable centre in order to minimize ischemic time. However, few have studied failed prehospital diagnosis. We assessed the incidence, predictors, and clinical impact of interhospital transfer for primary PCI after initial referral to a non-PCI-capable centre due to a failed prehospital STEMI diagnosis.
We studied 846 consecutive STEMI patients undergoing primary PCI between January 2008 and January 2010.
We found that 609 patients (72%) were directly admitted through prehospital triage and 127 patients (15%) required interhospital transfer after failed prehospital diagnosis. Median first medical contact to treatment time was 88 min in the prehospital diagnosis group and 155 min in the interhospital transfer group (p<0.001). In the interhospital transfer group, the first available electrocardiogram was diagnostic for STEMI in 77% of cases. Predictors of interhospital transfer were female gender, diabetes, prior myocardial infarction, and greater event location to PCI-capable centre distance. Interhospital transfer independently accounted for a 47% increase in ischemic time (95% CI 33 to 63%; p<0.001). One-year mortality was higher in the interhospital transfer group (10 vs. 5.3%; p=0.030).
Despite an often-diagnostic electrocardiogram, interhospital transfer after failed prehospital diagnosis occurred in 15% of STEMI patients undergoing primary PCI. Interhospital transfer was a major predictor of ischemic time and 1-year mortality was significantly higher. Continuing efforts to optimize prehospital triage are warranted, especially among patients at higher risk of failed prehospital diagnosis.
Angioplasty; delay; emergency medical services; ischemic time; myocardial infarction; triage
Clinical Decision Support Systems (CDSSs) can support guideline adherence in heart failure (HF) patients. However, the use of CDSSs is limited and barriers in working with CDSSs have been described as a major obstacle. It is unknown if barriers to CDSSs are present and differ between HF nurses and cardiologists. Therefore the aims of this study are; 1. Explore the type and number of perceived barriers of HF nurses and cardiologists to use a CDSS in the treatment of HF patients. 2. Explore possible differences in perceived barriers between two groups. 3. Assess the relevance and influence of knowledge management (KM) on Responsibility/Trust (R&T) and Barriers/Threats (B&T).
A questionnaire was developed including; B&T, R&T, and KM. For analyses, descriptive techniques, 2-tailed Pearson correlation tests, and multiple regression analyses were performed.
The response- rate of 220 questionnaires was 74%. Barriers were found for cardiologists and HF nurses in all the constructs. Sixty-five percent did not want to be dependent on a CDSS. Nevertheless thirty-six percent of HF nurses and 50% of cardiologists stated that a CDSS can optimize HF medication. No relationship between constructs and age; gender; years of work experience; general computer experience and email/internet were observed. In the group of HF nurses a positive correlation (r .33, P<.01) between years of using the internet and R&T was found. In both groups KM was associated with the constructs B&T (B=.55, P=<.01) and R&T (B=.50, P=<.01).
Both cardiologists and HF-nurses perceived barriers in working with a CDSS in all of the examined constructs. KM has a strong positive correlation with perceived barriers, indicating that increasing knowledge about CDSSs can decrease their barriers.
Individuals at high risk for chronic cardiometabolic disease (cardiovascular disease [CVD], type 2 diabetes, and chronic kidney disease [CKD]) share many risk factors and would benefit from early intervention. We developed a nonlaboratory-based risk-assessment tool for identification of people at high cardiometabolic disease risk.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Data of three population-based cohorts from different regions of the Netherlands were merged. Participants were 2,840 men and 3,940 women, white, aged 28–85 years, free from CVD, type 2 diabetes, and CKD diagnosis at baseline. The outcome was developing cardiometabolic disease during 7 years follow-up.
Age, BMI, waist circumference, antihypertensive treatment, smoking, family history of myocardial infarction or stroke, and family history of diabetes were significant predictors, whereas former smoking, history of gestational diabetes, and use of lipid-lowering medication were not. The models showed acceptable calibration (Hosmer and Lemeshow statistics, P > 0.05) and discrimination (area under the receiver operating characteristic [ROC] curve 0.82 [95% CI 0.81–0.83] for women and 0.80 [0.78–0.82] for men). Discrimination of individual outcomes was lowest for diabetes (area under the ROC curve 0.70 for men and 0.73 for women) and highest for CVD mortality (0.83 for men and 0.85 for women).
We demonstrate that a single risk stratification tool can identify people at high risk for future CVD, type 2 diabetes, and/or CKD. The present risk-assessment tool can be used for referring the highest risk individuals to health care for further (multivariable) risk assessment and may as such serve as an important part of prevention programs targeting chronic cardiometabolic disease.
Oxidative stress has been suggested to play a key role in the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD). The aim of our study was to investigate the associations of serum peroxiredoxin 4 (Prx4), a hydrogen peroxide–degrading peroxidase, with incident CVD and all-cause mortality. We subsequently examined the incremental value of Prx4 for the risk prediction of CVD compared with the Framingham risk score (FRS).
Methods and Results
We performed Cox regression analyses in 8141 participants without history of CVD (aged 28 to 75 years; women 52.6%) from the Prevention of Renal and Vascular End-stage Disease (PREVEND) study in Groningen, The Netherlands. Serum Prx4 was measured by an immunoluminometric assay in baseline samples. Main outcomes were: (1) incident CVD events or CVD mortality and (2) all-cause mortality during a median follow-up of 10.5 years. In total, 708 participants (7.8%) developed CVD events or CVD mortality, and 517 participants (6.3%) died. Baseline serum Prx4 levels were significantly higher in participants with incident CVD events or CVD mortality and in those who died than in participants who remained free of outcomes (both P<0.001). In multivariable models with adjustment for Framingham risk factors, hazard ratios were 1.16 (95% CI 1.06 to 1.27, P<0.001) for incident CVD events or CVD mortality and 1.17 (95% CI 1.06 to 1.29, P=0.003) for all-cause mortality per doubling of Prx4 levels. After the addition of Prx4 to the FRS, the net reclassification improvement was 2.7% (P=0.01) using 10-year risk categories of CVD.
Elevated serum Prx4 levels are associated with a significantly higher risk of incident CVD events or CVD mortality and all-cause mortality after adjustment for clinical risk factors. The addition of Prx4 to the FRS marginally improved risk prediction of future CVD.
cardiovascular disease; epidemiology; mortality; oxidative stress; peroxiredoxin 4
Atherosclerotic renal artery stenosis (ARAS) is common in cardiovascular diseases and associated with hypertension, renal dysfunction and/or heart failure. There is a paucity of data about the prevalence and the role of ARAS in the pathophysiology of combined chronic heart failure (CHF) and chronic kidney disease (CKD). We investigated the prevalence in patients with combined CHF/CKD and its association with renal function, cardiac dysfunction and the presence and extent of myocardial fibrosis.
The EPOCARES study (ClinTrialsNCT00356733) investigates the role of erythropoietin in anaemic patients with combined CHF/CKD. Eligible subjects underwent combined cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (cMRI), including late gadolinium enhancement, with magnetic resonance angiography of the renal arteries (MRA).
MR study was performed in 37 patients (median age 74 years, eGFR 37.4 ± 15.6 ml/min, left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) 43.3 ± 11.2%), of which 21 (56.8%) had ARAS (defined as stenosis >50%). Of these 21 subjects, 8 (21.6%) had more severe ARAS >70% and 8 (21.6%) had a bilateral ARAS >50% (or previous bilateral PTA). There were no differences in age, NT-proBNP levels and medication profile between patients with ARAS versus those without. Renal function declined with the severity of ARAS (p = 0.03), although this was not significantly different between patients with ARAS versus those without. Diabetes mellitus was more prevalent in patients without ARAS (56.3%) against those with ARAS (23.8%) (p = 0.04). The presence and extent of late gadolinium enhancement, depicting myocardial fibrosis, did not differ (p = 0.80), nor did end diastolic volume (p = 0.60), left ventricular mass index (p = 0.11) or LVEF (p = 0.15). Neither was there a difference in the presence of an ischemic pattern of late enhancement in patients with ARAS versus those without.
ARAS is prevalent in combined CHF/CKD and its severity is associated with a decline in renal function. However, its presence does not correlate with a worse LVEF, a higher left ventricular mass or with the presence and extent of myocardial fibrosis. Further research is required for the role of ARAS in the pathophysiology of combined chronic heart and renal failure.
Cardiorenal failure; Atherosclerotic renal artery stenosis; Magnetic resonance imaging; Late gadolinium enhancement
The incidence of heart failure and renal failure is increasing and is associated with poor prognosis. Moreover, these conditions do often coexist and this coexistence results in worsened outcome. Various mechanisms have been proposed as an explanation of this interrelation, including changes in hemodynamics, endothelial dysfunction, inflammation, activation of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, and/or sympathetic nervous system. However, the exact mechanisms initializing and maintaining this interaction are still unknown. In many experimental studies on cardiac or renal dysfunction, the function of the other organ was either not addressed or the authors failed to show any decline in its function despite histological changes. There are few studies in which the dysfunction of both heart and kidney function has been described. In this review, we discuss animal models of combined cardiorenal dysfunction. We show that translation of the results from animal studies is limited, and there is a need for new and better models of the cardiorenal interaction to improve our understanding of this syndrome. Finally, we propose several requirements that a new animal model should meet to serve as a tool for studies on the cardiorenal syndrome.
Cardiorenal syndrome; Heart-kidney interaction; Animal models
Early detection of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) using cardiac biomarkers of myocardial necrosis remains limited since these biomarkers do not rise within the first hours from onset of AMI. We aimed to compare the temporal release pattern of the C-terminal portion of provasopressin (copeptin) with conventional cardiac biomarkers, including creatine kinase isoenzyme (CK-MB), cardiac troponin T (cTnT), and high-sensitivity cTnT (hs-cTnT), in patients with ST-elevation AMI.
We included 145 patients undergoing successful primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) for a first ST-elevation AMI presenting within 12 h of symptom onset. Blood samples were taken on admission and at four time points within the first 24 h after PCI.
In contrast to all other markers, copeptin levels were already elevated on admission and were higher with a shorter time from symptom onset to reperfusion and lower systolic blood pressure. Copeptin levels peaked immediately after symptom onset at a maximum of 249 pmol/L and normalized within 10 h. In contrast, CK-MB, cTnT, and hs-cTnT peaked after 14 h from symptom onset at a maximum of 275 U/L, 5.75 μg/L, and 4.16 μg/L, respectively, and decreased more gradually.
Copeptin has a distinct release pattern in patients with ST-elevation AMI, peaking within the first hour after symptom onset before conventional cardiac biomarkers and falling to normal ranges within the first day. Further studies are required to determine the exact role of copeptin in AMI suspects presenting within the first hours after symptom onset.
Copeptin; Acute myocardial infarction; Biomarkers; Temporal release pattern; Troponin
Although the value of telemonitoring in heart failure patients is increasingly studied, little is known about the value of the separate components of telehealth: ICT guided disease management and telemonitoring. The aim of this study is to investigate the value of telemonitoring added to ICT guided disease management (DM) on the quality and efficiency of care in patients with chronic heart failure (CHF) after a hospitalisation.
The study is divided in two arms; a control arm (DM) and an intervention arm (DM+TM) in 10 hospitals in the Netherlands. In total 220 patients will be included after worsening of CHF (DM: N = 90, DM+TM: N = 130). Total follow-up will be 9 months. Data will be collected at inclusion and then after 2 weeks, 4.5 and 9 months. The primary endpoint of this study is a composite score of: 1: death from any cause during the follow-up of the study, 2: first readmission for HF and 3: change in quality of life compared to baseline, assessed by the Minnesota Living with Heart failure Questionnaire. The study has started in December 2009 and results are expected in 2012.
The IN TOUCH study is the first to investigate the effect of telemonitoring on top of ICT guided DM on the quality and efficiency of care in patients with worsening HF and will use a composite score as its primary endpoint.
Netherlands Trial Register (NTR): NTR1898
The renin-angiotensin-aldosterone-system (RAAS) plays a central role in the pathophysiology of heart failure and cardiorenal interaction. Drugs interfering in the RAAS form the pillars in treatment of heart failure and cardiorenal syndrome. Although RAAS inhibitors improve prognosis, heart failure–associated morbidity and mortality remain high, especially in the presence of kidney disease. The effect of RAAS blockade may be limited due to the loss of an inhibitory feedback of angiotensin II on renin production. The subsequent increase in prorenin and renin may activate several alternative pathways. These include the recently discovered (pro-) renin receptor, angiotensin II escape via chymase and cathepsin, and the formation of various angiotensin subforms upstream from the blockade, including angiotensin 1–7, angiotensin III, and angiotensin IV. Recently, the direct renin inhibitor aliskiren has been proven effective in reducing plasma renin activity (PRA) and appears to provide additional (tissue) RAAS blockade on top of angiotensin-converting enzyme and angiotensin receptor blockers, underscoring the important role of renin, even (or more so) under adequate RAAS blockade. Reducing PRA however occurs at the expense of an increase plasma renin concentration (PRC). PRC may exert direct effects independent of PRA through the recently discovered (pro-) renin receptor. Additional novel possibilities to interfere in the RAAS, for instance using vitamin D receptor activation, as well as the increased knowledge on alternative pathways, have revived the question on how ideal RAAS-guided therapy should be implemented. Renin and prorenin are pivotal since these are at the base of all of these pathways.
Heart failure; Renin; Prorenin; Cardiorenal
Renal function is the most important predictor of clinical outcome in heart failure (HF). It is therefore essential to have accurate and reliable measurement of renal function and early specific markers of renal impairment in patients with HF. Several renal functional entities exist, including glomerular filtration (GFR), glomerular permeability, tubulointerstitial damage, and endocrine function. Different markers have been studied that can be used to determine changes and the effect of treatment in these entities. In the present review, we summarize current and novel markers that give an assessment of renal function and prognosis in the setting of acute and chronic HF.
Renal function; Heart failure; Glomerular filtration rate; gfr; Albuminuria; Tubular damage; Cystatin C; N-acetyl-beta-d-glucosaminidase; Kidney injury molecule 1; Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin; FABP; Interleukin 18; IL-18; mdrd; NAG; KIM-1; NGAL
Background. We used a random sample (n = 2, 495) from the population-based Prevention of Renal and Vascular End-stage Disease (PREVEND) study population to examine the association of the metabolic syndrome (Met S) with plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1) and tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) antigen levels. Results. The overall prevalence of the Met S was 18%, was dependent on age and gender, and was positively associated with higher antigen levels of both PAI-1 and t-PA. These significant effects were maintained after adjustment for age, gender, BMI, elevated C-reactive protein, smoking status, urinary albumin excretion, and insulin levels. We found no significant interactions between the Met S and other covariates on PAI-1 and t-PA levels. Conclusions. Our study demonstrates that those with the Met S have significantly higher levels of PAI-1 and t-PA antigen, factors known to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Galectin-3 is an emerging biomarker which has been studied in relatively small heart failure (HF) cohorts with predominantly systolic HF. We studied the prognostic value of base-line galectin-3 in a large HF cohort, with preserved and reduced left ventricular ejection fraction (lvef), and compared this to other biomarkers.
We studied 592 HF patients who had been hospitalized for HF and were followed for 18 months. The primary end-point was a composite of all-cause mortality and HF hospitalization.
A doubling of galectin-3 levels was associated with a hazard ratio (HR) of 1.97 (1.62–2.42) for the primary outcome (P < 0.001). After correction for age, gender, BNP, eGFR, and diabetes the HR was 1.38 (1.07–1.78; P = 0.015). Galectin-3 levels were correlated with higher il-6 and CRP levels (P < 0.002). Changes of galectin-3 levels after 6 months did not add prognostic information to the base-line value (n = 291); however, combining plasma galectin-3 and BNP levels increased prognostic value over either biomarker alone (RoC analysis, P < 0.05). The predictive value of galectin-3 was stronger in patients with preserved LVEF (n = 114) compared to patients with reduced LVEF (P < 0.001).
Galectin-3 is an independent marker for outcome in HF and appears to be particularly useful in HF patients with preserved LVEF.
Biomarkers; galectin-3; heart failure; prognosis; remodeling
Vascular fibrinolytic balance is maintained primarily by interplay of tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) and plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1). Previous research has shown that polymorphisms in genes from the renin-angiotensin (RA), bradykinin, and fibrinolytic systems affect plasma concentrations of both t-PA and PAI-1 through a set of gene-gene interactions. In the present study, we extend this finding by exploring the effects of polymorphisms in genes from these systems on incident cardiovascular disease, explicitly examining two-way interactions in a large population-based study.
Data from the population-based PREVEND study in Groningen, The Netherlands (n = 8,138) were analyzed. The effects of the polymorphisms and their interactions on cardiovascular events were analyzed via Cox proportional hazards models. There was no association between five of the six polymorphisms singly and risk of cardiovascular disease. There was a significant main effect for the ACE I/D polymorphism for both dominant and additive coding schemes. There were significant interactions between the following polymorphism pairs even after adjustment for known risk factors: ACE I/D & PAI-1 4G/5G (p = 0.012), BDKRB2 C181T & ACE I/D (p = 0.016), BDKRB2 C58T & ACE I/D (p = 0.025), BDKRB2 exon 1 I/D & AT1R A1166C (p = 0.017), and BDKRB2 C58T & AT1R A1166C (p = 0.015).
This study suggests possible interactions between genes from the RA, bradykinin, and fibrinolytic systems on the risk of cardiovascular disease, extending previous research that has demonstrated that interactions among genes from these systems influence plasma concentrations of both t-PA and PAI-1. Further explorations of these interactions are needed.
Biomarkers are increasingly being used in the management of patients with chronic heart failure (HF). Galectin-3 is a recently developed biomarker associated with fibrosis and inflammation, and it may play a role in cardiac remodeling in HF. We determined its prognostic value in patients with chronic HF.
Methods and results
Patients with chronic HF (New York Heart Association functional class III or IV) who participated in the Deventer–Alkmaar heart failure study were studied. Galectin-3 levels were determined at baseline using a novel optimized enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Univariate and multivariate analyses were used to determine the prognostic value of this biomarker. We studied 232 patients; their mean age was 71 ± 10 years, 72% were male, and 96% were in NYHA class III. During a follow-up period of 6.5 years, 98 patients died. Galectin-3 was a significant predictor of mortality risk after adjustment for age and sex, and severity of HF and renal dysfunction, as assessed by NT-proBNP and estimated glomerular filtration rate, respectively (hazard ratio per standard deviation 1.24, 95% CI 1.03–1.50, P = 0.026).
Plasma galectin-3 is a novel prognostic marker in patients with chronic HF. Its prognostic value is independent of severity of HF, as assessed by NT-proBNP levels, and it may potentially be used in the management of such patients.
Galectin-3; Chronic heart failure; Biomarkers; Prognosis
Renal dysfunction is a frequent comorbidity associated with high mortality in patients with chronic heart failure (CHF). The intrinsic biological age might affect the ability of the kidney to cope with the challenging environment caused by CHF. We explored the association between leukocyte telomere length, a marker for biological age, and renal function in patients with CHF.
Methods and results
Telomere length was determined by a real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction in 866 CHF patients. Renal function was estimated with the simplified Modification of Diet in Renal Disease equation. The median age was 74 (interquartile range 64–79) years, 61% male, left ventricular ejection fraction of 30 (23–44)%, and the estimated glomerular filtration rate was 53 (40–68) ml/min/1.73 m2. Telomere length was associated with renal function (correlation coefficient 0.123, P < 0.001). This relationship remained significant after adjustment for age, gender, age of CHF onset (standardized-beta 0.091, P = 0.007). Also additionally adjusting for the severity of CHF and baseline differences did not change our findings.
The association between shorter leukocyte telomere length and reduced renal function in heart failure suggests that intrinsic biological aging affects the ability of the kidney to cope with the systemic changes evoked by heart failure.
Telomere; Renal function; Heart failure