Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

International multi-center study confirms value of blood test to diagnose heart failure

17.11.2005


Assay powerfully identifies patients’ short-term risk of death



A large-scale international study has demonstrated the usefulness of a blood test to confirm or exclude the diagnosis of acute heart failure in emergency room patients and shows that the test also can identify patients at a higher risk for death. The report from investigators in the U.S., the Netherlands, Spain and New Zealand also clarifies the importance of age-specific levels of a protein called NT-proBNP that definitively diagnose heart failure. The report will appear in the European Heart Journal and is receiving early online release.

"In an analysis of patients from several parts of the world, we showed that this test is greatly valuable in the diagnosis and prognosis of patients with both systolic and diastolic heart failure," says James Januzzi Jr., MD, of the MGH Cardiology Division, the paper’s co-lead author. "It’s a single blood test that can provide multiple pieces of important information."


Congestive heart failure, which occurs when an impaired heart muscle cannot pump blood efficiently, is a growing health problem and major cause of cardiac death. The diagnosis of heart failure may be challenging because its symptoms can overlap those of other conditions. Earlier this year Januzzi and colleagues from the MGH published the PRIDE study, the first prospective American trial measuring NT-proBNP in patients coming to a hospital emergency department with shortness of breath. Other research groups, including collaborators in the current study, have conducted single-site investigations supporting the usefulness of NT-proBNP for confirming a diagnosis of heart failure.

The International Collaborative of NT-proBNP (ICON) Study brought together data from the PRIDE study and similar information from the Christchurch Cardioendocrine Research Group in New Zealand and the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau in Barcelona, Spain, with previously unpublished information gathered by researchers from the University Hospital of Maastricht, The Netherlands, led by co-lead author Roland van Kimmenade, MD. Their analysis consisted of information from 1,256 patients, of which 720 had acute heart failure.

As in the earlier studies, NT-proBNP levels were significantly higher in patients found to have heart failure and highest in those with the most severe symptoms. The larger scale of the study permitted more in-depth analysis of data, allowing the establishment of age-specific NT-proBNP levels defining a clear diagnosis of heart failure. The measurement below which heart failure could be ruled out was the same for all age groups.

Analysis of the prospective value of NT-proBNP testing showed that patients who died within a little more than two months after symptom onset had significantly higher blood levels of the protein. In fact, NT-proBNP measurement was the single strongest predictor of death within that time period, and those with the most significantly elevated levels had a five-fold increase in the risk of death.

"Because patients with acute heart failure release such high levels of NT-proBNP, there had been conflicting information about the usefulness of a single measurement for establishing prognosis, but this analysis shows the initial assay to be strongly predictive of short-term outcome," says Januzzi. "Our results underscore this test’s exceptional usefulness for diagnosis and for identifying those patients who should have higher levels of monitoring and more aggressive treatment. ICON has set world-wide standards for NT-proBNP testing in patients coming to hospital emergency departments with shortness of breath."

An assistant professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Januzzi adds, "This study was characterized by exceptional collaboration among these four medical centers. The group from New Zealand pioneered the use of this test; the researchers from the Netherlands contributed the largest population of subjects with acute heart failure; and the clinical investigators from Barcelona previously published one of the first analyses of NT-proBNP in the emergency department setting. We are continuing the ICON initiative in several follow-up studies, two of which have been submitted for publication."

Sue McGreevey | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mgh.harvard.edu/

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

Im Focus: Fast, convenient & standardized: New lab innovation for automated tissue engineering & drug

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...

Im Focus: Silencing bacteria

HZI researchers pave the way for new agents that render hospital pathogens mute

Pathogenic bacteria are becoming resistant to common antibiotics to an ever increasing degree. One of the most difficult germs is Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a...

Im Focus: Artificial Enzymes for Hydrogen Conversion

Scientists from the MPI for Chemical Energy Conversion report in the first issue of the new journal JOULE.

Cell Press has just released the first issue of Joule, a new journal dedicated to sustainable energy research. In this issue James Birrell, Olaf Rüdiger,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

New quantum phenomena in graphene superlattices

19.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A simple additive to improve film quality

19.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>