A direct comparison of the natriuretic peptides and their relationship to survival in chronic heart failure of a presumed non-ischaemic origin
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The natriuretic peptides have been validated as sensitive and specific markers of left ventricular dysfunction; brain natriuretic peptide (BNP), N-terminal atrial natriuretic peptide (NT-proANP) and N-terminal brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) elevations have been associated with New York Heart Association (NYHA) Class I-IV heart failure. We directly compared the association of each of these markers with 1-year survival in 173 patients with chronic heart failure of a presumed nonischaemic origin entering the PRAISE-2 Trial, a clinical study which assessed the therapeutic effect of Amlodipine in patients with NYHA Class III and IV heart failure and a left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) <30%. BNP, NT-proBNP, and NT-proANP levels were all correlated with 1-year mortality by univariate Cox proportional hazards analyses. With respect to multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression models containing variables deemed significant in univariate analyses, NT-proANP alone was identified as an independent predictor of 1-year mortality when log-transformed continuous covariates were utilized in the analysis. When the analysis was repeated using dichotomous covariates, NT-proANP remained the most significant predictor of 1-year mortality, followed by NT-proBNP, NYHA classification and BNP. We conclude that all three natriuretic peptides are significant predictors of short-term mortality in subjects with chronic congestive heart failure (CHF) of a presumed nonischaemic origin. Larger prospective studies are required to validate the clinical utility of NT-proANP as a discriminating marker of short-term survival, and to validate proposed cutoffs of approximately 2300 pmol/l for NT-proANP, 1500 pg/ml for NT-proBNP, and 50 pmol/l for BNP as prognostic indicators of adverse short-term outcome.
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