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1.  High sensitive troponin T and heart fatty acid binding protein: Novel biomarker in heart failure with normal ejection fraction?: A cross-sectional study 
Background
High sensitive troponin T (hsTnT) and heart fatty acid binding protein (hFABP) are both markers of myocardial injury and predict adverse outcome in patients with systolic heart failure (SHF). We tested whether hsTnT and hFABP plasma levels are elevated in patients with heart failure with normal ejection fraction (HFnEF).
Methods
We analyzed hsTnT, hFABP and N-terminal brain natriuretic peptide in 130 patients comprising 49 HFnEF patients, 51 patients with asymptomatic left ventricular diastolic dysfunction (LVDD), and 30 controls with normal diastolic function. Patients were classified to have HFnEF when the diagnostic criteria as recommended by the European Society of Cardiology were met.
Results
Levels of hs TnT and hFABP were significantly higher in patients with asymptomatic LVDD and HFnEF (both p < 0.001) compared to controls. The hsTnT levels were 5.6 [0.0-9.8] pg/ml in LVDD vs. 8.5 [3.9-17.5] pg/ml in HFnEF vs. <0.03 [< 0.03-6.4] pg/ml in controls; hFABP levels were 3029 [2533-3761] pg/ml in LVDD vs. 3669 [2918-4839] pg/ml in HFnEF vs. 2361 [1860-3081] pg/ml in controls. Furthermore, hsTnT and hFABP levels were higher in subjects with HFnEF compared to LVDD (p = 0.015 and p = 0.022).
Conclusion
In HFnEF patients, hsTnT and hFABP are elevated independent of coronary artery disease, suggesting that ongoing myocardial damage plays a critical role in the pathophysiology. A combination of biomarkers and echocardiographic parameters might improve diagnostic accuracy and risk stratification of patients with HFnEF.
doi:10.1186/1471-2261-11-41
PMCID: PMC3146933  PMID: 21729325
2.  Six sequence variants on chromosome 9p21.3 are associated with a positive family history of myocardial infarction: a multicenter registry 
Background
Recent genome-wide association studies have identified several genetic loci linked to coronary artery disease (CAD) and myocardial infarction (MI). The 9p21.3 locus was verified by numerous replication studies to be the first common locus for CAD and MI. In the present study, we investigated whether six single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) rs1333049, rs1333040, rs10757274, rs2383206, rs10757278, and rs2383207 representing the 9p21.3 locus were associated with the incidence of an acute MI in patients with the main focus on the familial aggregation of the disease.
Methods
The overall cohort consisted of 976 unrelated male patients presenting with an acute coronary syndrome (ACS) with ST-elevated (STEMI) as well as non-ST-elevated myocardial infarction (NSTEMI). Genotyping data of the investigated SNPs were generated and statistically analyzed in comparison to previously published findings of matchable control cohorts.
Results
Statistical evaluation confirmed a highly significant association of all analyzed SNP's with the occurrence of MI (p < 0.0001; OR: 1.621-2.039). When only MI patients with a positive family disposition were comprised in the analysis a much stronger association of the accordant risk alleles with incident disease was found with odds ratios up to 2.769.
Conclusions
The findings in the present study confirmed a strong association of the 9p21.3 locus with MI particularly in patients with a positive family history thereby, emphasizing the pathogenic relevance of this locus as a common genetic cardiovascular risk factor.
doi:10.1186/1471-2261-11-9
PMCID: PMC3061953  PMID: 21385355
3.  Limiting esophageal temperature in radiofrequency ablation of left atrial tachyarrhythmias results in low incidence of thermal esophageal lesions 
Background
Atrio-esophageal fistula formation following radiofrequency ablation of left atrial tachyarrhythmias is a rare but devastating complication. Esophageal injuries are believed to be precursors of fistula formation and reported to occur in up to 47% of patients. This study investigates the incidence of esophageal lesions when real time esophageal temperature monitoring and temperature limitation is used.
Methods
184 consecutive patients underwent open irrigated radiofrequency ablation of left atrial tachyarrhythmias. An esophageal temperature probe consisting of three independent thermocouples was used for temperature monitoring. A temperature limit of 40°C was defined to interrupt energy delivery. All patients underwent esophageal endoscopy the next day.
Results
Endoscopy revealed ulcer formation in 3/184 patients (1.6%). No patient developed atrio-esophageal fistula. Patient and disease characteristics had no influence on ulcer formation. The temperature threshold of 40°C was reached in 157/184 patients. A temperature overshoot after cessation of energy delivery was observed frequently. The mean maximal temperature was 40.8°C. Using a multiple regression analysis creating a box lesion that implies superior- and inferior lines at the posterior wall connecting the right and left encircling was an independent predictor of temperature. Six month follow-up showed an overall success rate of 78% documented as sinus rhythm in seven-day holter ECG.
Conclusion
Limitation of esophageal temperature to 40°C is associated with the lowest incidence of esophageal lesion formation published so far. This approach may contribute to increase the safety profile of radiofrequency ablation in the left atrium.
doi:10.1186/1471-2261-10-52
PMCID: PMC2987899  PMID: 20977747

Results 1-3 (3)