Cardio-Oncology is an evolving discipline that focuses on the management of cancer patients who develop cardiovascular complications as a result of their treatment. Although the current combination of surgical resection, radiation, and chemotherapy may lead to a cure in cancer patients, the administration of anti-cancer drugs, in particular Doxorubicin (DOX) and Trastuzumab (TRZ), is associated with an increased risk of cardiotoxicity. Little is known on the potential cardioprotective role of renin angiotensin system (RAS) antagonists in the prevention of DOX+TRZ mediated cardiotoxicity.
The aim of the study was to determine whether RAS antagonists would be useful in attenuating DOX+TRZ induced cardiotoxicity.
A total of 240 C57Bl/6 mice were randomized to prophylactic treatment with placebo, Aliskiren, Perindopril, or Valsartan for a total of 13 weeks. Within each arm, mice received treatment with either DOX, TRZ, or the combination of both drugs. Serial murine echocardiography was performed weekly to characterize the degree of cardiovascular remodeling within each group.
In wild-type (WT) mice treated with DOX+TRZ, LV end diastolic internal diameter (LVID) increased from 3.1 ± 0.2 mm at baseline to 4.6 ± 0.3 mm at week 13 (p < 0.05) and the LV fractional shortening (FS) decreased from 52 ± 2% at baseline to 26 ± 2% at week 13 (p < 0.05). Prophylactic treatment with Aliskiren, Perindopril, or Valsartan attenuated the degree of LV cavity dilatation with LVID dimensions of 3.9 ± 0.2 mm, 4.1 ± 0.2 mm, and 4.2 ± 0.1 mm at week 13, respectively (p < 0.05). Similarly, prophylactic treatment with Aliskiren, Perindopril, or Valsartan was partially cardioprotective with FS of 40 ± 1%, 32 ± 1%, and 33 ± 2% at week 13, respectively (p < 0.05). As compared to WT mice receiving DOX+TRZ, prophylactic treatment with RAS inhibition was also associated with improved survival, corroborating the echocardiographic findings.
The cardiotoxic effects of DOX+TRZ were partially attenuated by the prophylactic administration of RAS antagonists in a chronic murine model of chemotherapy induced cardiac dysfunction.