[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Deep hypothermic circulatory arrest (DHCA) is a common technique used to protect vital organs during surgical interventions on the thoracic aorta or during surgery for complex congenital heart disease. Activated leukocytes are key mediators of inflammatory responses during ischemia. Intercellular crosstalk between leukocytes, platelets and endothelial cells is mediated by cell adhesion molecules. These molecules trigger complex cell-cell interaction mechanisms and initiate the release of proinflammatory molecules. One parameter that is known to have a significant impact on inflammatory cell activation and the production of proinflammatory markers is temperature. However, to the best of our knowledge, no data have yet been published on the effect of hypothermia on leukocyte surface markers during DHCA. Thus, the aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of hypothermia on the expression of cell adhesion molecules on monocytes under DHCA conditions in vitro. Blood samples collected from 11 healthy volunteers were incubated in a well-established model simulating circulatory arrest at 36°C and 18°C for 30 min. The expression of cluster of differentiation (CD) molecule 11B (CD11b), CD54 and CD162 on monocytes was measured as the mean fluorescence intensity (MFI) using flow cytometry. The expression level of CD11b on monocytes was significantly decreased following the incubation of the blood samples at 18°C compared with the level in blood samples incubated at 36°C (P<0.001). After 30 min of blood stasis in the circulatory arrest model, the expression level of CD162 on monocytes was significantly lower in the blood samples incubated at 18°C than in those incubated at 36°C (P<0.001). No association was identified between temperature and the surface expression of CD54 on monocytes following 30 min of stasis. These findings demonstrate that deep hypothermia decreases the expression of CD11b and CD162 on monocytes in an experimental setup simulating the conditions of DHCA. This may be the result of the inhibition of leukocyte-endothelial and leukocyte-platelet interactions, which may be a beneficial aspect of deep hypothermia that affects the inflammatory response and tissue damage during DHCA.
Experimental and therapeutic medicine 08/2014; 8(2):488-492. · 0.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: As a mediator of ECM homeostasis, connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) appears to be involved in adverse structural remodeling processes in the heart. However, the diagnostic and prognostic value of CTGF levels in acute heart failure (AHF) in addition to natriuretic peptide testing has not yet been evaluated.
A total of 212 patients presenting with acute dyspnea and/or peripheral edema to the Emergency Department were evaluated. CTGF and NT-proBNP plasma levels were measured at the initial presentation. All patients were followed up to 1 and 5 years. The first endpoint tested was the diagnostic non-inferiority of combined CTGF plus NT-proBNP compared to NT-proBNP alone for AHF diagnosis. Afterwards, the additional diagnostic value of CTGF plus NT-proBNP was tested. CTGF levels were higher in NYHA class III/IV and AHA/ACC class C/D patients compared to lower class patients (p = 0.04). Patients with HFREF revealed highest CTGF levels (median 93.3 pg/ml, IQR 18.2-972 pg/ml, n = 48) compared to patients with a normal heart function (i.e., without HFREF and HFPEF) (median 25.9, IQR <1-82.2 pg/ml, n = 37) (p < 0.05), followed by patients with HFPEF (median 82.2 pg/ml, IQR 11.5-447 pg/ml, n = 32) as assessed by echocardiography. Finally, CTGF levels were higher in patients with AHF (median 77.3 pg/ml, IQR 22.5-1012 pg/ml, n = 66) compared to those without (p = 0.002). CTGF plus NT-proBNP was non-inferior to NT-proBNP testing alone for AHF diagnosis (AUC difference 0.01, p > 0.05). CTGF plus NT-proBNP improved the diagnostic capacity for AHF (accuracy 82 %, specificity 83 %, positive predictive value 66 %, net reclassification improvement +0.11) compared to NT-proBNP alone (p = 0.0001). CTGF levels were not able to differentiate prognostic outcomes after 1 and 5 years.
Additional CTGF measurements might lead to a better discrimination of higher functional and structural heart failure stages and might identify patients of an increased risk for an acute cardiac decompensation.
Clinical Research in Cardiology 10/2013; · 3.67 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To evaluate the diagnostic and prognostic value of osteopontin in patients with acute dyspnoea and/or peripheral oedema suspected of having acute congestive heart failure (aCHF).
A total of 401 patients presenting with acute dyspnoea and/or peripheral oedema to the emergency department were prospectively enrolled and followed up for up to 5 years. Blood samples for biomarker measurements were collected on admission to the emergency department. Osteopontin combined with NT-proBNP vs. NT-proBNP alone for diagnosis of aCHF was tested. Additionally, osteopontin vs. NT-proBNP for prognostic outcomes (i.e. all-cause mortality, aCHF-related rehospitalization, and both in combination) was tested. The diagnostic and prognostic capacity of osteopontin was tested by C-statistics, reclassification indices, and multivariable Cox prediction models. Osteopontin plus NT-proBNP improved the diagnostic capacity for aCHF diagnosis [accuracy 76%, 95% confidence interval (CI) 72-80%; specificity 74%, 95% CI 69-79%, net reclassification improvement (NRI) +0.10] compared with NT-proBNP alone in the emergency department (P = 0.0001). Osteopontin independently predicted all-cause mortality and aCHF-related rehospitalization after 1 and 5 years. Compared with NT-proBNP, osteopontin was of superior prognostic value, specifically in aCHF patients and for the prognostic outcome of aCHF-related rehospitalization.
Osteopontin improves aCHF diagnosis when combined with NT-proBNP. Osteopontin identifies aCHF patients with high 1- and 5-year mortality and rehospitalization risk, and adds prognostic value to NT-proBNP.Trial registrationNCT00143793.
European Journal of Heart Failure 07/2013; · 5.25 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Emerging interest is seen in the paradox of defibrillator shocks for ventricular tachyarrhythmia and increased mortality risk. Particularly in patients with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), the prognostic importance of shocks is unclear. The purpose of this study was to compare the outcome after shocks in patients with ischemic cardiomyopathy (ICM) or DCM and defibrillators (ICD) implanted for primary prevention.
Data of 561 patients were analyzed (mean age 68.6±10.6 years, mean left ventricular ejection fraction 28.6±7.3%). During a median follow-up of 49.3 months, occurrence of device therapies and all-cause mortality were recorded. 74 out of 561 patients (13.2%) experienced ≥1 appropriate and 51 out of 561 patients (9.1%) ≥1 inappropriate shock. All-cause mortality was 24.2% (136 out of 561 subjects). Appropriate shock was associated with a trend to higher mortality in the overall patient population (HR 1.48, 95% CI 0.96-2.28, log rank p = 0.072). The effect was significant in ICM patients (HR 1.61, 95% CI 1.00-2.59, log rank p = 0.049) but not in DCM patients (HR 1.03, 95% CI 0.36-2.96, log rank p = 0.96). Appropriate shocks occurring before the median follow-up revealed a much stronger impact on mortality (HR for the overall patient population 2.12, 95% CI 1.24-3.63, p = 0.005). The effect was driven by ICM patients (HR 2.48, 95% CI 1.41-4.37, p = 0.001), as appropriate shocks again did not influence survival of DCM patients (HR 0.63, 95% CI 0.083-4.75, p = 0.65). Appropriate shocks occurring after the median follow-up and inappropriate shocks occurring at any time revealed no impact on survival in any of the groups (p = ns).
Appropriate shocks are associated with reduced survival in patients with ICM but not in patients with DCM and ICDs implanted for primary prevention. Furthermore, the negative effect of appropriate shocks on survival in ICM patients is only evident within the first 4 years after device implantation.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(5):e63911. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The adipokine leptin regulates energy expenditure, vascular function, bone and cartilage growth as well as the immune system and systemic inflammatory response. Several activating effects towards T cells, monocytes, endothelium cells and cytokine production have been reported suggesting a protective role of leptin in the setting of an acute systemic inflammation. However, the pathophysiological role of leptin during severe sepsis is currently not elucidated in detail. This study aims to investigate leptin expression in cultured human adipocytes within an inflammatory model and in patients suffering from severe sepsis and evaluates treatment effects of drotrecogin alpha (activated) (DAA), the recombinant form of human activated protein C.
In an in-vitro inflammatory model of adipocyte cell-culture the effect of DAA on leptin mRNA expression was evaluated. Synthesis of mRNA was measured by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Additionally, supernatants of these adipocytes as well as serum levels of adiponectin were measured in blood of 104 severe septic patients by ELISA-method. 26 patients were treated with DAA (DAA+), 78 patients were not treated with DAA (DAA-).
Stimulation of human adipocytes with TNF alpha over 6 and 24 hours resulted in a significant decrease by 46% and 59% of leptin mRNA transcripts compared to un-stimulated controls (p < 0.05). Leptin levels of supernatants of adipocyte culture decreased by 25% and 23% (p < 0.05) after incubation with TNF alpha after 6 and 24 hours. Incubation with DAA at 50 ng/ml DAA and 5 μg/ml doubled mRNA expression significantly at 24 hours (p < 0.05) but not at 6 hours. From day 1 to day 3 of sepsis, leptin levels increased in DAA+ compared to DAA- patients (p<0.10).
Leptin appears to be involved in the pathogenesis of a systemic inflammatory response during sepsis. Administration of DAA significantly increased leptin expression. The specific mechanism or even benefit of DAA towards leptin needs further ongoing research.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The adipocyte-specific protein adiponectin reveals anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiatherosclerotic and vasoprotective effects. This study aims to investigate adiponectin expression in cultured human adipocytes within an inflammatory model and in patients with severe sepsis and evaluates treatment effects of drotrecogin α (activated) (DAA). In an in vitro inflammatory model of adipocyte cell culture, the effect of DAA on adiponectin mRNA expression was evaluated. Synthesis of mRNA was measured by quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Supernatants of these adipocytes and serum levels of adiponectin were measured in blood of 104 patients by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay on days 1, 3, and 5 of severe sepsis. Twenty-six patients were treated with DAA (DAA), 78 patients without DAA (DAA). Stimulation of human adipocytes with tumor necrosis factor α over 6 and 24 h resulted in a significant decrease in adiponectin mRNA transcripts. After 24 h of incubation, adiponectin mRNA expression was significantly upregulated according to applied dosages of DAA at 50 ng/mL and 5 μg/mL (P < 0.05). Accordingly, adiponectin levels of supernatants of adipocyte culture increased after 24 h (P < 0.05). DAA patients revealed significantly higher adiponectin serum levels compared with healthy controls (P < 0.1) and DAA patients (P < 0.05) at days 1 and 3. On day 5 after 96-h infusion of DAA (24 μg/kg per hour), adiponectin levels significantly increased in DAA patients and equalized toward DAA patients (P > 0.1). Adiponectin might be involved in the pathogenesis of the systemic inflammatory response during sepsis. Administration of DAA upregulates adiponectin expression under circumstances of systemic inflammation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In addition to their cholesterol lowering ability, statins have proven pleiotropic effects in the cardiovascular system. Chronic inflammation with interactions between platelets and endothelial cells leads to an upregulation of activity markers of atherosclerosis. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of simvastatin and atorvastatin on platelets and endothelial cells in an in vitro endothelial cell model.
After a 24 h incubation period with either simvastatin or atorvastatin (1 μmol/L), human umbilical vein endothelial cells were stimulated for 1 h with lipopolysaccharide (LPS), and were then incubated in direct contact with activated platelets. Platelet surface expression of CD40L and CD62P and expression of ICAM-1, VCAM-1, uPAR and MT1-MMP on endothelial cells were measured by flow cytometry. Supernatants were analyzed by ELISA for soluble MMP-1. The increased expression of VCAM-1 and uPAR on endothelial cells by stimulation with LPS and by direct contact with activated platelets was significantly reduced to a similar extent through pre-incubation with both atorvastatin and simvastatin (p < 0.05). Platelets without endothelial cell contact, but in direct contact with either statin, showed similar significant reductions in surface expression of CD40L (p < 0.005).
These effects may explain the ability of statins to reduce the progression of atherosclerosis in addition to their cholesterol-lowering properties.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We aimed to determine the diagnostic performance of biomarkers in predicting myocardial fibrosis assessed by late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging (CMR) in patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). LGE CMR was performed in 40 consecutive patients with HCM. Left and right ventricular parameters, as well as the extent of LGE were determined and correlated to the plasma levels of midregional pro-atrial natriuretic peptide (MR-proANP), midregional pro-adrenomedullin (MR-proADM), carboxy-terminal pro-endothelin-1 (CT-proET-1), carboxy-terminal pro-vasopressin (CT-proAVP), matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-1 (TIMP-1) and interleukin-8 (IL-8). Myocardial fibrosis was assumed positive, if CMR indicated LGE. LGE was present in 26 of 40 patients with HCM (65%) with variable extent (mean: 14%, range: 1.3-42%). The extent of LGE was positively associated with MR-proANP (r = 0.4; P = 0.01). No correlations were found between LGE and MR-proADM (r = 0.1; P = 0.5), CT-proET-1 (r = 0.07; P = 0.66), CT-proAVP (r = 0.16; P = 0.3), MMP-9 (r = 0.01; P = 0.9), TIMP-1 (r = 0.02; P = 0.85), and IL-8 (r = 0.02; P = 0.89). After adjustment for confounding factors, MR-proANP was the only independent predictor associated with the presence of LGE (P = 0.007) in multivariate analysis. The area under the ROC curve (AUC) indicated good predictive performance (AUC = 0.882) of MR-proANP with respect to LGE. The odds ratio was 1.268 (95% confidence interval 1.066-1.508). The sensitivity of MR-proANP at a cut-off value of 207 pmol/L was 69%, the specificity 94%, the positive predictive value 90% and the negative predictive value 80%. The results imply that MR-proANP serves as a novel marker of myocardial fibrosis assessed by LGE CMR in patients with HCM.
The international journal of cardiovascular imaging 04/2011; 27(4):547-56. · 2.15 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Patients with Takotsubo cardiomyopathy (TC) often present with symptoms similar to those of myocardial infarction (MI). We analyzed blood concentrations of mediators of inflammation and platelet- and monocyte-activity markers in patients with TC and MI for significant differences. Clinical data of patients with TC (n = 16) and acute MI (n = 16) were obtained. Serial blood samples were taken at the time of hospital admission (t(0)), after 2-4 days (t(1)) and after 4-7 weeks (t(2)), respectively. Plasma concentrations of interleukin (IL)-6, IL-7, soluble CD40 ligand (sCD40L), and monocyte chemotactic protein 1 (MCP-1) were determined with an ELISA. Tissue factor binding on monocytes, platelet-activation marker CD62P, platelet CD40-ligand (CD40L), and platelet-monocyte aggregates were measured using flow cytometry. Expression of CD62P on platelets and IL-6 plasma levels were significantly lower in patients with TC compared to MI at the time of hospital admission. IL-7 plasma levels were significantly elevated in patients with TC compared to patients with MI at 2-4 days after hospital admission. No significant differences were observed concerning sCD40L and MCP-1 plasma levels, tissue factor binding on monocytes, CD40L expression on platelets, and platelet-monocyte aggregates at any point in time. Our results indicate that inflammatory mediators and platelet-activity markers contribute to the differences in the pathogenesis of MI and TC.
Heart and Vessels 03/2011; 27(2):186-92. · 2.13 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In standard reference sources, the incidence of coronary artery disease (CAD) in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) ranged between 24 and 46.5%. Since then, the incidence of cardiovascular risk factors (CRF) has increased and modern treatment strategies ("pill in the pocket") are only applicable to patients without structural heart disease. The aim of this study was to investigate the incidence and severity of CAD in patients with AF.
From January 2005 until December 2009, we included 261 consecutive patients admitted to hospital with paroxysmal, persistent or permanent AF in this prospective study. All patients underwent coronary angiography and the Framingham risk score (FRS) was calculated. Patients with previously diagnosed or previously excluded CAD were excluded.
The overall incidence of CAD in patients presenting with AF was 34%; in patients >70 years, the incidence of CAD was 41%. The incidence of patients undergoing a percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) or coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) was 21%. Patients with CAD were older (73±8 years vs 68±10 years, p = 0.001), had significantly more frequent hypercholesterolemia (60% vs 30%, p<0.001), were more frequent smokers (26% vs 13%, p = 0.017) and suffered from angina more often (37% vs 2%, p<0.001). There was a significant linear trend among the FRS categories in percentage and the prevalence of CAD and PCI/CABG (p<0.0001).
The overall incidence of CAD in patients presenting with AF was relatively high at 34%; the incidence of PCI/CABG was 21%. Based upon increasing CRF in the western world, we recommend a careful investigation respecting the FRS to either definitely exclude or establish an early diagnosis of CAD--which could contribute to an early and safe therapeutic strategy considering type Ic antiarrhythmics and oral anticoagulation.
PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(9):e24964. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Treatment of coronary bifurcation lesions remains challenging, beyond the introduction of drug eluting stents. Dedicated stent systems are available to improve the technical approach to the treatment of these lesions. However dedicated stent systems have so far not reduced the incidence of stent restenosis. The aim of this study was to assess the expansion of the Multi-Link (ML) Frontier™ stent in human and porcine coronary arteries to provide the cardiologist with useful in-vitro information for stent implantation and selection.
Nine ML Frontier™ stents were implanted in seven human autopsy heart samples with known coronary artery disease and five ML Frontier™ stents were implanted in five porcine hearts. Proximal, distal and side branch diameters (PD, DD, SBD, respectively), corresponding opening areas (PA, DA, SBA) and the mean stent length (L) were assessed by micro-computed tomography (micro-CT). PD and PA were significantly smaller in human autopsy heart samples than in porcine heart samples (3.54±0.47 mm vs. 4.04±0.22 mm, p = 0.048; 10.00±2.42 mm(2) vs. 12.84±1.38 mm(2), p = 0.034, respectively) and than those given by the manufacturer (3.54±0.47 mm vs. 4.03 mm, p = 0.014). L was smaller in human autopsy heart samples than in porcine heart samples, although data did not reach significance (16.66±1.30 mm vs. 17.30±0.51 mm, p = 0.32), and significantly smaller than that given by the manufacturer (16.66±1.30 mm vs. 18 mm, p = 0.015).
Micro-CT is a feasible tool for exact surveying of dedicated stent systems and could make a contribution to the development of these devices. The proximal diameter and proximal area of the stent system were considerably smaller in human autopsy heart samples than in porcine heart samples and than those given by the manufacturer. Special consideration should be given to the stent deployment procedure (and to the follow-up) of dedicated stent systems, considering final intravascular ultrasound or optical coherence tomography to visualize (and if necessary optimize) stent expansion.
PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(7):e21778. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Inflammatory conditions contribute to increased expression of various activity markers in platelets and endothelial cells, leading to atherosclerotic changes in the vascular wall. The objective of this study was to investigate possible protective effects of 1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 in an endothelial cell model.
After a 24-hour incubation with 1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3, human umbilical vein endothelial cells were stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and incubated in direct contact with platelets. The expression of CD40L and CD62P in platelets, the expression of intercellular adhesion molecule-1, vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1), the urokinase receptor uPAR and membrane type 1 matrix metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP) in endothelial cells and endothelial cell reactive oxygen species generation were measured by flow cytometry. Endothelial nitric oxide synthase was analyzed by Western blot.
The increased expression of VCAM-1 and MT1-MMP in endothelial cells by proinflammatory stimulation with LPS and by direct contact with activated platelets was significantly reduced through preincubation with 1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3. Platelets in direct contact with preincubated endothelial cells showed significantly reduced CD62P expression when compared to platelets incubated with untreated endothelial cells.
1α,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D3 attenuates platelet activation and the expression of VCAM-1 and MT1-MMP in human endothelial cells and could have early therapeutic relevance in atherosclerotic diseases.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The P-Selectin Gene Polymorphism Val168Met.
Ventricular fibrillation (VF) in the setting of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is the leading cause of sudden cardiac death (SCD). Family history of SCD is described as risk factor for primary VF during acute AMI. Genetic factors may be associated with primary VF. We examined polymorphisms in genes related to the activation and adhesion of blood platelets in patients with and without VF in the setting of AMI and among healthy controls.
Two hundred and forty patients with a history of AMI and 475 healthy controls were studied. Seventy-three patients (30%) had primary VF during AMI. By using PCR techniques with sequence-specific primers (PCR-SSP), we genotyped 5 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in P-selectin (SELP) (V168M, S290N, N592D, V599L, T715P), 2 SNPs (M62I, S273F) in P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1 (SELPLG), 5 SNPs in CD40LG (-3459A>G, -122A>C, -123A>C, 148T>C, intr4-13T>C), the H558R SNP in SCN5A, and rs2106261 in ZFHX3. In addition, length polymorphisms in SELPLG (36bp-tandem repeat) and CD40LG (CA-repeat) were genotyped by PCR methods. Results were evaluated by 2-sided t-tests, chi-square tests, and logistic regression analysis.
None of the gene polymorphisms showed significant differences between AMI patients and healthy controls. Among patients with a history of VF, however, the SELP 168M variant showed a significantly higher prevalence (14/73 patients; 19.2%) as compared with patients without VF (13/167 patients; 7.8%; P < 0.01). This association remained significant in a logistic regression analysis after adjustment for age and gender (P = 0.013; odds ratio 2.8; 95% confidence interval 1.2-6.3).
This is the first description of an association of the SELP gene variant 168M with primary VF during acute MI. This variant may be a candidate polymorphism for evaluating the susceptibility for VF in the setting of acute MI.
Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology 11/2010; 21(11):1260-5. · 3.48 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Atrial fibrillation (AF) and acute congestive heart failure (aCHF) are characterized by an adverse cardiac remodeling. Arrhythmogenic or structural remodeling can be caused by interstitial fibrosis. Transforming growth factor beta 1 (TGF-beta 1) represents a central regulator of cardiac fibrosis. This study investigates serum levels of TGF-beta 1 in patients with AF and aCHF.
401 patients presenting with symptoms of dyspnea or peripheral edema were prospectively enrolled. Blood samples for measurement of TGF-beta 1 (R&D Systems, Inc.) and amino-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) (DadeBehring ltd.) were collected after the initial clinical evaluation.
Median TGF-beta 1 levels were lower in patients with AF (21.0 ng/ml, interquartile range (IR) 15.4-27.6 ng/ml, n = 107) compared to those without (25.0 ng/ml, IR 18.5-31.6 ng/ml, n = 294) (p = 0.009). Patients with aCHF had lower TGF-beta 1 levels (median 22.0 ng/ml, IR 15.6-27.1 ng/ml, n = 122) than those without (median 24.9 ng/ml, IR 18.1-31.9 ng/ml, n = 279) (p = 0.0005). In logistic regression models TGF-beta 1 was still associated with AF (odds ratio (OR) 3.00, 95% CI 1.37-6.61, p = 0.0001) and aCHF (OR 3.98, 95% CI 1.55-10.19, p = 0.004). TGF-beta 1 inversely correlated with left atrial diameter (r = -0.30, p = 0.007) and NT-proBNP (r = -0.14, p = 0.007).
Low serum levels of TGF-beta 1 are associated with AF and aCHF. This decrease may result from a higher consumption of TGF-beta 1 within the impaired myocardium or antifibrotic functions of natriuretic peptides.
Clinical Research in Cardiology 11/2010; 100(4):335-42. · 3.67 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Retinal microvascular changes predict cardiovascular morbidity and mortality independent of classical risk factors. However, it is unclear which retinal changes characterize patients with established coronary artery disease (CAD), and in particular, with acute coronary syndromes (ACS). The aim of the present preliminary study was to assess retinopathy in these patients.
43 consecutive patients with ACS and 19 consecutive patients with stable CAD were investigated. Among the patient group with ACS, 20 patients presented with ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) and 23 patients presented with Non-STEMI (NSTEMI). Standardized protocols were used and retinal fundus photography was taken within 48 h post-coronary angiography to assess retinopathy and general arteriolar narrowing as arterio-venous ratio (AVR). Clinical and laboratory cardiovascular risk factors were recorded.
Despite comparable age and comparable frequency of diabetes and hypertension, patients with ACS had a much higher likelihood for retinal microaneurysms and dot bleedings than patients with stable CAD (17 (40%) vs. 1 (5%) patients, OR 11.77; 95%CI 1.43-96.59; p=0.006). Performing multivariate analysis, this association remains significant (OR 20.5, 95%CI 1.6-255, p=0.019). CAD patients presented more often with focal signs of arteriovenous nicking / focal vasoconstriction (10 (53%) vs. 9 (21%) patients, OR 4.2; 95%CI 1.31-13.4; p=0.018), however after multivariate analysis this association lost significance. The AVR was comparably low in both groups.
Patients with ACS present more often with dot bleedings and microaneurysms. These findings provide preliminary evidence that retinal fundus examination may be useful to contribute to the risk profile of patients, enabling a more intensive survey and care.
Microvascular Research 03/2010; 79(2):150-3. · 2.93 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background: Sepsis is well known to lead to the activation of multiple pro-inflammatory markers, like MCP-1 (Monocyte chemotactic protein 1), TNF-alpha (Tumor necrosis factor alpha), while the underlying genetic changes still remain poorly studied.Methods: We used human umbilical vein endothelial cells to test the reactions to nicotine or acetylcholine/pyridostigmine administration in regards to MCP-1 levels, gene regulation and RNR expression. Results: Pyridostigmine and Acetylcholine (Ach) lead to a significant decrease of MCP-1 levels in TNF-alpha stimulated human umbilical vein endothelial cells, while nicotine had no effect. Interestingly nicotine and acetylcholine lead to different gene expression (nicotine up-regulates epidermal growth factor and down-regulates matrix metalloproteinase-8, while Ach/pyridostigmine up-regulates thioredoxin interacting protein and down-regulates insulin like growth factor 1). Furthermore RNA levels and gene activation were similar after nicotine administration, while changes in RNA levels after Ach/pyridostigmine differed significantly. Conclusions: Our results suggest that the effects of Ach/pyridostigmine and nicotine are modulated by different underlying pathways, despite their common activation of nicotinergic receptors.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: N-terminal-proBNP (NT-proBNP) and Midregional-pro-Adrenomedullin (MR-proADM) predict mortality of patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Comparison of the prognostic values of NT-proBNP and MR-proADM to predict long-term adverse clinical events (AE) after AMI has not been evaluated yet.
30 patients with AMI were enrolled into this prospective study. Measurements of NT-proBNP and MR-proADM were performed at initial presentation, two or three days and four months after AMI. Long-term AE defined as recurrent AMI, need for repeated percutaneous transluminal angioplasty or coronary bypass graft surgery, congestive heart failure, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, cardiogenic shock, syncope, and death were documented during a follow-up period of ten months.
At initial presentation, NT-proBNP values were significantly higher in patients with AE compared to patients without AE (p < 0.05). The area under the ROC curve (AUC) indicated good predictive performance of NT-proBNP (AUC 0.78, 95% CI 0.59-0.91, p = 0.003) and MR-proADM (AUC 0.71, 95% CI 0.51-0.86, p = 0.046) regarding AE. Comparing both AUC revealed no differences between NT-proBNP and MR-proADM as predictors of AE (p = 0.59). Patients with NT-proBNP levels > or = 370 pg/mL were more likely to suffer from AE than patients with lower levels (relative risk 6.7, 95% CI 1.0-46, p = 0.018). With this cutoff, NT-proBNP could exclude AE with a negative predictive value of 92% being similar to MR-proADM (negative predictive value 76%, relative risk 2.8, 95% CI 1.2-6.9, p = 0.042).
Early measurements of NT-proBNP or MR-proADM during the acute phase of AMI may allow the risk of a long-term AE to be excluded, based on the comparable test characteristics,.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Treatment with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (statins) reduces the morbidity and mortality of coronary artery disease (CAD). In addition to their lipid-lowering actions, pleiotropic effects of statins have been demonstrated.
The aim of the present study was to assess if atorvastatin therapy has an impact on haemostasis, fibrinolysis and inflammation in normocholesterolaemic patients with CAD.
Fifty-four patients with CAD who had received atorvastatin treatment for at least 8 weeks (mean dosage 30 mg/day) and 54 patients with CAD who had not received atorvastatin therapy were selected from a larger prospective, randomized, double-blind study for inclusion in this post hoc analysis. Patients were matched by their total cholesterol levels. All patients were normocholesterolaemic.
In the atorvastatin-treated patients significantly lower plasma levels of thrombin-antithrombin complexes (p < 0.05), plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 activity (PAI-1) [p < 0.05], soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (p < 0.05), soluble platelet selectin (p < 0.05) and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (p < 0.05) were measured compared with patients not on atorvastatin therapy. Additionally, a strong trend towards lower soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 plasma levels was detected in patients treated with atorvastatin. No differences were found in tissue-type plasminogen activator antigen, plasmin-plasmin inhibitor complexes, fibrinogen, D-dimer and activated factor XII values.
Atorvastatin appears to have an effect on coagulation activation, fibrinolysis and inflammation in patients with CAD. Reduction in PAI-1 and reduced thrombin formation may have an impact on cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in patients with CAD.
Clinical Drug Investigation 01/2010; 30(7):453-60. · 1.92 Impact Factor