Endogenous Ouabain: An Old Cardiotonic Steroid as a New Biomarker of Heart Failure and a Predictor of Mortality after Cardiac Surgery
Botticelli, Irene Maria
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AbstractCardiovascular diseases remain the main cause of mortality and morbidity worldwide; primary prevention is a priority for physicians. Biomarkers are useful tools able to identify high-risk individuals, guide treatments, and determine prognosis. Our aim is to investigate Endogenous Ouabain (EO), an adrenal stress hormone with hemodynamic effects, as a valuable biomarker of heart failure. In a population of 845 patients undergoing elective cardiac surgery, we have investigated the relationships between EO and echocardiography parameters/plasmatic biomarker of cardiac function. EO was found to be correlated negatively with left ventricular EF (p = 0.001), positively with Cardiac End-Diastolic Diameter (p = 0.047), and positively with plasmatic NT-proBNP level (p = 0.02). Moreover, a different plasmatic EO level (both preoperative and postoperative) was found according to NYHA class (p = 0.013). All these results have been replicated on an independent cohort of patients (147 subjects from US). Finally, a higher EO level in the immediate postoperative time was indicative of a more severe cardiological condition and it was associated with increased perioperative mortality risk (p = 0.023 for 30-day morality). Our data suggest that preoperative and postoperative plasmatic EO level identifies patients with a more severe cardiovascular presentation at baseline. These patients have a higher risk of morbidity and mortality after cardiac surgery.