Publications by authors named "Michel Noutsias"

133 Publications

In vivo assessment of endothelial permeability of coronary lesions with variable degree of stenosis using an albumin-binding MR probe.

Int J Cardiovasc Imaging 2021 Jul 10. Epub 2021 Jul 10.

Department of Radiology, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

MR imaging with an albumin-binding probe enables the visualization of endothelial permeability and damage in the arterial system. The goal of this study was to compare signal enhancement of lesions with different grades of stenosis segments on molecular CMR in combination with the albumin-binding probe gadofosveset. This prospective clinical study included patients with symptoms suggestive of coronary artery disease (CAD). Patients underwent gadofosveset-enhanced cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging and x-ray angiography (QCA) within 24 h. CMR imaging was performed prior to and 24 h following the administration of gadofosveset. Contrast-to-noise ratios (CNRs) between segments with different grades of stenosis were compared. Overall, n = 203 segments of 26 patients were included. Lesions with more than > 70% stenosis demonstrated significantly higher CNRs compared to lesions < 70% (7.6 ± 8.3 vs. 2.5 ± 4.9; p < 0.001). Post-stenotic segments of lesions > 70% stenosis showed significant higher signal enhancement compared to segments located upstream of these lesions (7.3 ± 8.8 vs. 2.8 ± 2.2; p = 0.02). No difference in signal enhancement between segments proximal and distal of lesions with stenosis greater than 50% was measured (3.3 ± 2.8 vs. 2.4 ± 2.7; p = 0.18). ROC analysis for the detection of lesions ≥ 70% revealed an area under the curve of 0.774 (95% CI 0.681-0.866). This study suggests that relevant coronary stenosis and their down-stream segments are associated with increased signal enhancement on Gadofosveset-enhanced CMR, suggesting a higher endothelial permeability in these lesions. An albumin-binding MR probe could represent a novel in vivo biomarker for the identification and characterization of these vulnerable coronary segments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10554-021-02293-1DOI Listing
July 2021

Ethnic comparison in takotsubo syndrome: novel insights from the International Takotsubo Registry.

Clin Res Cardiol 2021 May 19. Epub 2021 May 19.

Department of Cardiology and Angiology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.

Background: Ethnic disparities have been reported in cardiovascular disease. However, ethnic disparities in takotsubo syndrome (TTS) remain elusive. This study assessed differences in clinical characteristics between Japanese and European TTS patients and determined the impact of ethnicity on in-hospital outcomes.

Methods: TTS patients in Japan were enrolled from 10 hospitals and TTS patients in Europe were enrolled from 32 hospitals participating in the International Takotsubo Registry. Clinical characteristics and in-hospital outcomes were compared between Japanese and European patients.

Results: A total of 503 Japanese and 1670 European patients were included. Japanese patients were older (72.6 ± 11.4 years vs. 68.0 ± 12.0 years; p < 0.001) and more likely to be male (18.5 vs. 8.4%; p < 0.001) than European TTS patients. Physical triggering factors were more common (45.5 vs. 32.0%; p < 0.001), and emotional triggers less common (17.5 vs. 31.5%; p < 0.001), in Japanese patients than in European patients. Japanese patients were more likely to experience cardiogenic shock during the acute phase (15.5 vs. 9.0%; p < 0.001) and had a higher in-hospital mortality (8.2 vs. 3.2%; p < 0.001). However, ethnicity itself did not appear to have an impact on in-hospital mortality. Machine learning approach revealed that the presence of physical stressors was the most important prognostic factor in both Japanese and European TTS patients.

Conclusion: Differences in clinical characteristics and in-hospital outcomes between Japanese and European TTS patients exist. Ethnicity does not impact the outcome in TTS patients. The worse in-hospital outcome in Japanese patients, is mainly driven by the higher prevalence of physical triggers.

Trial Registration: URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov ; Unique Identifier: NCT01947621.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00392-021-01857-4DOI Listing
May 2021

[Influence of therapeutic temperature management on the clinical course in patients after in-hospital cardiac arrest : A retrospective analysis].

Med Klin Intensivmed Notfmed 2021 Apr 20. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

Klinik für Kardiologie und internistische Intensivmedizin, Erfurt, Deutschland.

Methods: Retrospective analysis of all patients with in-hospital cardiac arrest and return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) in the ICU of the cardiologic department of the University Hospital of Halle (Saale) between 1999 and 2009.

Results: During the observation period, 169 patients with in-hospital cardiac arrest and information regarding temperature measurements were treated. Invasive therapeutic temperature management (TTM+) was applied in 64 patients (37.9%), while 105 patients (62.1%) underwent no therapeutic temperature management (TTM-). TTM+ and TTM- showed no relevant differences regarding patient age (TTM+: 67.6 ± 12.6 years; TTM-: 69.8 ± 12.6 years; p = 0.257), comorbidities and the initial rhythm; however, there were more men in the TTM+ group (76.6% vs. 58.1%; p = 0.015). All patients had been intubated. Time until ROSC in TTM+ was significantly longer (25.9 ± 25.8 min vs. 15.0 ± 12.4 min; p < 0.005). TTM+ resulted in a lower 30-day survival and an unfavourable neurologic outcome (Glasgow outcome scale I or II: 75% TTM+ vs. 55.2% TTM-). This negative effect persisted after adjustment for age of the patients, but not after adjustment for age and duration of reanimation (nonadjusted odds ratio for adverse neurologic outcome under TTM+: 0.411 (p = 0.011); odds ratio after adjusting for age: 0.361 (p = 0.09); odds ratio after adjusting for age and duration of the reanimation: 0.505 (p = 0.121)).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00063-021-00814-3DOI Listing
April 2021

Prognostic impact of acute pulmonary triggers in patients with takotsubo syndrome: new insights from the International Takotsubo Registry.

ESC Heart Fail 2021 06 13;8(3):1924-1932. Epub 2021 Mar 13.

Department of Cardiology, Charité, Campus Rudolf Virchow, Berlin, Germany.

Aims: Acute pulmonary disorders are known physical triggers of takotsubo syndrome (TTS). This study aimed to investigate prevalence of acute pulmonary triggers in patients with TTS and their impact on outcomes.

Methods And Results: Patients with TTS were enrolled from the International Takotsubo Registry and screened for triggering factors and comorbidities. Patients were categorized into three groups (acute pulmonary trigger, chronic lung disease, and no lung disease) to compare clinical characteristics and outcomes. Of the 1670 included patients with TTS, 123 (7%) were identified with an acute pulmonary trigger, and 194 (12%) had a known history of chronic lung disease. The incidence of cardiogenic shock was highest in patients with an acute pulmonary trigger compared with those with chronic lung disease or without lung disease (17% vs. 10% vs. 9%, P = 0.017). In-hospital mortality was also higher in patients with an acute pulmonary trigger than in the other two groups, although not significantly (5.7% vs. 1.5% vs. 4.2%, P = 0.13). Survival analysis demonstrated that patients with an acute pulmonary trigger had the worst long-term outcome (P = 0.002). The presence of an acute pulmonary trigger was independently associated with worse long-term mortality (hazard ratio 2.12, 95% confidence interval 1.33-3.38; P = 0.002).

Conclusions: The present study demonstrates that TTS is related to acute pulmonary triggers in 7% of all TTS patients, which accounts for 21% of patients with physical triggers. The presence of acute pulmonary trigger is associated with a severe in-hospital course and a worse long-term outcome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ehf2.13165DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8120351PMC
June 2021

Vibrational Spectroscopic Investigation of Blood Plasma and Serum by Drop Coating Deposition for Clinical Application.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Feb 22;22(4). Epub 2021 Feb 22.

Institute of Physical Chemistry and Abbe Center of Photonics, Friedrich-Schiller-University, Helmholtzweg 4, D-07743 Jena, Germany.

In recent decades, vibrational spectroscopic methods such as Raman and FT-IR spectroscopy are widely applied to investigate plasma and serum samples. These methods are combined with drop coating deposition techniques to pre-concentrate the biomolecules in the dried droplet to improve the detected vibrational signal. However, most often encountered challenge is the inhomogeneous redistribution of biomolecules due to the coffee-ring effect. In this study, the variation in biomolecule distribution within the dried-sample droplet has been investigated using Raman and FT-IR spectroscopy and fluorescence lifetime imaging method. The plasma-sample from healthy donors were investigated to show the spectral differences between the inner and outer-ring region of the dried-sample droplet. Further, the preferred location of deposition of the most abundant protein albumin in the blood during the drying process of the plasma has been illustrated by using deuterated albumin. Subsequently, two patients with different cardiac-related diseases were investigated exemplarily to illustrate the variation in the pattern of plasma and serum biomolecule distribution during the drying process and its impact on patient-stratification. The study shows that a uniform sampling position of the droplet, both at the inner and the outer ring, is necessary for thorough clinical characterization of the patient's plasma and serum sample using vibrational spectroscopy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms22042191DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7926873PMC
February 2021

Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products Challenges and Perspectives in Regenerative Medicine.

J Clin Med Res 2020 Dec 18;12(12):780-786. Epub 2020 Dec 18.

Biomedical Research Foundation Academy of Athens, 4th Soranou Efessiou Str., 11527 Athens, Greece.

Recently, the design and development of a modern health policy in the field of regenerative medicine leads to the formation of a new and integrated cognitive field, which requires systematic research and study in order to produce innovative answers and best practices. Advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMPs) is a new product category, which is at the heart of concern since it has to deal with diseases in which traditional medicine has proven to be ineffective so far. The aim of this review is to provide evidence for the state of the art ATMPs and their modern applications in the field of regenerative medicine. The ATMPs are characterized by a great heterogeneity and variation in methods of isolation, which cover the entire spectrum from a single intravenous injection to a surgical placement. Clinical development of ATMP encounters specific challenges due to the nature of the product and the limited availability of non-clinical data. The gold standard of a controlled, randomized, clinical trial may not be feasible or ethically justified for all indications, particularly in life-threatening diseases, where there is no satisfactory standard of care. Therefore, the European Commission (EC) took initiatives in order to set standards and operating rules concerning authorization and supervision of ATMPs and on pharmacovigilance in relation to them. The European Union (EU) Regulation 1394/2007 provides the possibility of exceptions. In particular, the "hospital exemption" allows for the administration of an ATMP without a license on certain conditions. Although the Regulation 1394/2007 has led to the commercial exploitation of ATMPs, the reality today, 11 years after its first implementation, is completely different. While the Committee for Advanced Therapies (CAT) has already registered 285 products as ATMPs, only 10 licenses were granted which only remained six (the rest related to products withdrawn). The key players in the development and delivery of ATMPs still remain the academic/research centers and small and medium-sized enterprises; while the involvement of pharmaceutical companies is focusing on recent developments in the treatment of oncological incidents with modified cytotoxic T lymphocytes, and chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cells.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.14740/jocmr3964DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7781285PMC
December 2020

Participation in disease management programs and major adverse cardiac events in patients after acute myocardial infarction: a longitudinal study based on registry data.

BMC Cardiovasc Disord 2021 01 6;21(1):18. Epub 2021 Jan 6.

Institute of Medical Epidemiology, Biometrics and Informatics, Medical Faculty of Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Magdeburger Straße 8, 06112, Halle (Saale), Germany.

Background: Cardiovascular diseases are still the main cause of death in the western world. However, diminishing mortality rates of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) are motivating the need to investigate the process of secondary prevention after AMI. Besides cardiac rehabilitation, disease management programs (DMPs) are an important component of outpatient care after AMI in Germany. This study aims to analyze outcomes after AMI among those who participated in DMPs and cardiac rehabilitation (CR) in a region with overall increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.

Methods: Based on data from a regional myocardial infarction registry and a 2-year follow-up period, we assessed the occurrence of major adverse cardiac events (MACE) in relation to participation in CR and DMP, risk factors for complications and individual healths well as lifestyle characteristics. Multivariable Cox regression was performed to compare survival time between participants and non-participants until an adverse event occurred.

Results: Of 1094 observed patients post-AMI, 272 were enrolled in a DMP. An association between DMP participation and lower hazard rates for MACE compared to non-enrollees could not be proven in the crude model (hazard ratio = 0.93; 95% confidence interval = 0.65-1.33). When adjusted for possible confounding variables, these results remained virtually unchanged (1.03; 0.72-1.48). Furthermore, smokers and obese patients showed a distinctly lower chance of DMP enrollment. In contrast, those who participated in CR showed a lower risk for MACE in crude (0.52; 0.41-0.65) and adjusted analysis (0.56; 0.44-0.71).

Conclusions: Participation in DMP was not associated with a lower risk of MACE, but participation in CR showed beneficial effects. Adjustment only slightly changed effect estimates in both cases, but it is still important to consider potential effects of additional confounding variables.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12872-020-01832-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7788767PMC
January 2021

Heat Shock Protein 70 Is Associated With Cardioversion Outcome and Recurrence of Symptomatic Recent Onset Atrial Fibrillation in Hypertensive Patients.

J Cardiovasc Pharmacol 2021 03;77(3):360-369

2nd Department of Cardiology, University of Athens Medical School, Attikon University Hospital, Athens, Greece.

Abstract: Accumulating evidence indicates that heat shock proteins (HSPs) may represent a suitable biomarker to predict atrial fibrillation (AF). We investigated the relation of circulating serum HSP70 (sHSP70) with inflammatory cytokines and recurrence of symptomatic recent onset AF (ROAF). We enrolled 90 patients with ROAF (the duration from onset of symptoms ≤24 hours) and 30 controls. Patients received amiodarone for cardioversion and rhythm control. The association of serum HSP70, serum interleukin-2 (sIL-2), and serum interleukin-4 (sIL-4) with the presence of cardioversion and AF recurrence within a year was investigated. Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) signaling dependence for IL-2 and IL-4 induction in response to stimulation with HSP70 was tested in rat aortic vascular smooth muscle cell cultures. Patients had higher sHSP70 and sIL-2 and lower sIL-4 compared with controls. Serum HSP70 was independently associated with ROAF (P = 0.005) and correlated with sIL-2 (r = 0.494, P < 0.001) and sIL-4 (r = -0.550, P < 0.001). By 48 hours, 71 of the 90 patients were cardioverted, with noncardioverted patients having higher sHSP70 and sIL-2 and lower sIL-4, which were the only independent factors associated with cardioversion. AF recurred in 38 of the 71 cardioverted patients in 1 year. A cutoff value of sHSP70 ≥0.65 ng/mL and sIL-2 ≥0.21 pg/mL was the only independent factor associated with AF recurrence (hazard ratio: 3.311, 95% confidence interval: 1.503-7.293, P = 0.003 and hazard ratio: 3.144, 95% confidence interval: 1.341-7.374, P = 0.008, respectively). The exposure of smooth muscle cell to HSP70 in vitro increased the expression of IL-2 (5×) and IL-4 (1.5×) through TLR4-dependent and receptor-independent mechanisms. In conclusion, sHSP70 and sIL-2 might constitute a prognostic tool for determining the cardioversion and recurrence likelihood in ROAF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/FJC.0000000000000962DOI Listing
March 2021

Diabetes prevalence and outcomes in hospitalized cardiorenal-syndrome patients with and without hyponatremia.

BMC Nephrol 2020 09 10;21(1):393. Epub 2020 Sep 10.

Department of Internal Medicine II, Martin - Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Halle (Saale), Germany.

Background: Hyponatremia is known to be associated with a worse patient outcome in heart failure. In cardiorenal syndrome (CRS), the prognostic role of concomitant hyponatremia is unclear. We sought to evaluate potential risk factors for hyponatremia in patients with CRS presenting with or without hyponatremia on hospital admission.

Methods: In a retrospective study, we investigated 262 CRS patients without sepsis admitted to the University Hospital Halle over a course of 4 years. CRS diagnosis was derived from an electronic search of concomitant diagnoses of acute or chronic (NYHA 3-4) heart failure and acute kidney injury (AKIN 1-3) or chronic kidney disease (KDIGO G3-G5). A verification of CRS diagnosis was done based on patient records. Depending on the presence (Na < 135 mmol/L) or absence (Na ≥ 135 mmol/L) of hyponatremia on admission, the CRS patients were analyzed for comorbidities such as diabetes, presence of hypovolemia on admission, need for renal replacement therapy and prognostic factors such as in-hospital and one-year mortality.

Results: Two hundred sixty-two CRS patients were included in this study, thereof, 90 CRS patients (34.4%) with hyponatremia (Na < 135 mmol/L). The diabetes prevalence among CRS patients was high (> 65%) and not related to the serum sodium concentration on admission. In comparison to non-hyponatremic CRS patients, the hyponatremic patients had a lower serum osmolality, hypovolemia was more prevalent (41.1% versus 16.3%, p < 0.001). As possible causes of hypovolemia, diarrhea, a higher number of diuretic drug classes and higher diuretic dosages were found. Hyponatremic and non-hyponatremic CRS patients had a comparable need for renal-replacement therapy (36.7% versus 31.4%) during the hospital stay. However, after discharge, relatively more hyponatremic CRS patients on renal replacement therapy switched to a non-dialysis therapy regimen (50.0% versus 22.2%). Hyponatremic CRS patients showed a trend for a higher in-hospital mortality (15.6% versus 7.6%, p = 0.054), but no difference in the one-year mortality (43.3% versus 40.1%, p = 0.692).

Conclusions: All CRS patients showed a high prevalence of diabetes mellitus and a high one-year mortality. In comparison to non-hyponatremic CRS patients, hyponatremic ones were more likely to have hypovolemia, and had a higher likelihood for temporary renal replacement therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12882-020-02032-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7488139PMC
September 2020

Acute myocardial ischemia in a patient with coronary-subclavian steal syndrome treated by retrograde percutaneous recanalization of the chronic total occlusion of the left subclavian artery.

Hellenic J Cardiol 2021 May-Jun;62(3):225-227. Epub 2020 Jun 21.

Department of Vascular Surgery, University Hospital Halle, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, D-06120 Halle (Saale), Germany. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.hjc.2020.06.006DOI Listing
June 2020

Coexistence and outcome of coronary artery disease in Takotsubo syndrome.

Eur Heart J 2020 09;41(34):3255-3268

Department of Cardiology, Kantonsspital Lucerne, Lucerne, Switzerland.

Aims: Takotsubo syndrome (TTS) is an acute heart failure syndrome, which shares many features with acute coronary syndrome (ACS). Although TTS was initially described with angiographically normal coronary arteries, smaller studies recently indicated a potential coexistence of coronary artery disease (CAD) in TTS patients. This study aimed to determine the coexistence, features, and prognostic role of CAD in a large cohort of patients with TTS.

Methods And Results: Coronary anatomy and CAD were studied in patients diagnosed with TTS. Inclusion criteria were compliance with the International Takotsubo Diagnostic Criteria for TTS, and availability of original coronary angiographies with ventriculography performed during the acute phase. Exclusion criteria were missing views, poor quality of angiography loops, and angiography without ventriculography. A total of 1016 TTS patients were studied. Of those, 23.0% had obstructive CAD, 41.2% had non-obstructive CAD, and 35.7% had angiographically normal coronary arteries. A total of 47 patients (4.6%) underwent percutaneous coronary intervention, and 3 patients had acute and 8 had chronic coronary artery occlusion concomitant with TTS, respectively. The presence of CAD was associated with increased incidence of shock, ventilation, and death from any cause. After adjusting for confounders, the presence of obstructive CAD was associated with mortality at 30 days. Takotsubo syndrome patients with obstructive CAD were at comparable risk for shock and death and nearly at twice the risk for ventilation compared to an age- and sex-matched ACS cohort.

Conclusions: Coronary artery disease frequently coexists in TTS patients, presents with the whole spectrum of coronary pathology including acute coronary occlusion, and is associated with adverse outcome.

Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov number: NCT01947621.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehaa210DOI Listing
September 2020

Serum alarmin S100A8/S100A9 levels and its potential role as biomarker in myocarditis.

ESC Heart Fail 2020 08 28;7(4):1442-1451. Epub 2020 May 28.

Berlin Institute of Health (BIH) & Berlin-Brandenburg Center for Regenerative Therapies (BCRT), Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Campus Virchow Klinikum, Berlin, Germany.

Aims: The alarmin S100A8/S100A9 (S100A8/A9) is released by activated monocytes/macrophages and neutrophils in the setting lymphocytic myocarditis (MC). We recently demonstrated its therapeutic potential in experimental acute MC. Now, we investigated the diagnostic relevance of S100A8/A9 serum levels in patients with suspected acute and chronic MC and in patients with heart failure without cardiac inflammation.

Methods And Results: Serum S100A8/A9 levels were analysed in patients with a recent onset of MC [≤ 30 days, n = 32; ejection fraction (EF): 45.4 ± 12.9%], dilated cardiomyopathy patients with inflammation (n = 112; EF: 29.0 ± 11.4%), or without inflammation (n = 58; EF: 26.6 ± 9.3%), and controls (n = 25; EF: 68.5 ± 4.6%), by using specific ELISAs. Blood samples were collected at Time Point 1 (T1), where also endomyocardial biopsies (EMBs) were withdrawn. Patients with a recent onset of MC showed a 4.6-fold increase in serum S100A8/A9 levels vs. controls (MC: 1948 ± 1670 ng/mL vs. controls: 426 ± 307 ng/mL; P < 0.0001). Serum S100A8/A9 correlated with the disease activity, represented by EMB-derived counts of inflammatory cells (CD3: r = 0.486, P = 0.0047, lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1: r = 0.558, P = 0.0009, macrophage-1 antigen: r = 0.434, P = 0.013), the EMB mRNA levels of S100A8, S100A9 (r = 0.541, P = 0.002), and left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF: r = 0.498, P = 0.0043). EMB immunofluorescence co-stainings display macrophages/monocytes and neutrophils as the main source of S100A8 and S100A9 in recent onset MC. The diagnostic value of serum alarmin levels (cut-off 583 ng/mL) was characterized by a specificity of 92%, a sensitivity of 90.6%, positive predictive value of 93.5%, negative predictive value of 88.5%, and an accuracy of 0.949 (95% confidence interval [0.89-1]). In a subgroup of MC patients, S100A8/A9 serum levels and EMBs at T1 (n = 12) and a follow-up visit (T2, n = 12, mean follow-up 8.5 months) were available. A fall of serum S100A8/A9 (T1: 2208 ± 1843 ng/mL vs. T2: 888.8 ± 513.7 ng/mL; P = 0.00052) was associated with a reduced cardiac inflammation (CD3 T1: 70.02 ± 107.4 cells per square millimetre vs. T2: 59.18 ± 182.5 cells per square millimetre; P = 0.0342, lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1 T1: 133.5 ± 187.1 cells per square millimetre vs. T2: 74.12 ± 190.5 cells per square millimetre; P = 0.0186, and macrophage-1 antigen T1: 132.6 ± 129.5 cells per square millimetre vs. T2: 54.41 ± 65.16 cells per square millimetre; P = 0.0015). Serum S100A8/A9 levels were only slightly increased in patients within the chronic phase of MC and in heart failure patients without inflammation vs. controls.

Conclusions: Serum S100A8/A9 might serve as an additional tool in the diagnostic workup of suspected acute MC patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ehf2.12760DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7373886PMC
August 2020

Improving exercise capacity and quality of life using non-invasive heart failure treatments: evidence from clinical trials.

Eur J Heart Fail 2021 01 11;23(1):92-113. Epub 2020 May 11.

Klinik und Poliklinik für Kardiologie, Universitätsklinikum Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany.

Endpoints of large-scale trials in chronic heart failure have mostly been defined to evaluate treatments with regard to hospitalizations and mortality. However, patients with heart failure are also affected by very severe reductions in exercise capacity and quality of life. We aimed to evaluate the effects of heart failure treatments on these endpoints using available evidence from randomized trials. Interventions with evidence for improvements in exercise capacity include physical exercise, intravenous iron supplementation in patients with iron deficiency, and - with less certainty - testosterone in highly selected patients. Erythropoiesis-stimulating agents have been reported to improve exercise capacity in anaemic patients with heart failure. Sinus rhythm may have some advantage when compared with atrial fibrillation, particularly in patients undergoing pulmonary vein isolation. Studies assessing treatments for heart failure co-morbidities such as sleep-disordered breathing, diabetes mellitus, chronic kidney disease and depression have reported improvements of exercise capacity and quality of life; however, the available data are limited and not always consistent. The available evidence for positive effects of pharmacologic interventions using angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, beta-blockers, and mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists on exercise capacity and quality of life is limited. Studies with ivabradine and with sacubitril/valsartan suggest beneficial effects at improving quality of life; however, the evidence base is limited in particular for exercise capacity. The data for heart failure with preserved ejection fraction are even less positive, only sacubitril/valsartan and spironolactone have shown some effectiveness at improving quality of life. In conclusion, the evidence for state-of-the-art heart failure treatments with regard to exercise capacity and quality of life is limited and appears not robust enough to permit recommendations for heart failure. The treatment of co-morbidities may be important for these patient-related outcomes. Additional studies on functional capacity and quality of life in heart failure are required.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ejhf.1838DOI Listing
January 2021

Age-Related Variations in Takotsubo Syndrome.

J Am Coll Cardiol 2020 04;75(16):1869-1877

Krankenhaus "Maria Hilf" Medizinische Klinik, Stadtlohn, Germany.

Background: Takotsubo syndrome (TTS) occurs predominantly in post-menopausal women but is also found in younger patients.

Objectives: This study aimed to investigate age-related differences in TTS.

Methods: Patients diagnosed with TTS and enrolled in the International Takotsubo Registry between January 2011 and February 2017 were included in this analysis and were stratified by age (younger: ≤50 years, middle-age: 51 to 74 years, elderly: ≥75 years). Baseline characteristics, hospital course, as well as short- and long-term mortality were compared among groups.

Results: Of 2,098 TTS patients, 242 (11.5%) patients were ≤50 years of age, 1,194 (56.9%) were 51 to 74 years of age, and 662 (31.6%) were ≥75 years of age. Younger patients were more often men (12.4% vs. 10.9% vs. 6.3%; p = 0.002) and had an increased prevalence of acute neurological (16.3% vs. 8.4% vs. 8.8%; p = 0.001) or psychiatric disorders (14.1% vs. 10.3% vs. 5.6%; p < 0.001) compared with middle-aged and elderly TTS patients. Furthermore, younger patients had more often cardiogenic shock (15.3% vs. 9.1% vs. 8.1%; p = 0.004) and had a numerically higher in-hospital mortality (6.6% vs. 3.6% vs. 5.1%; p = 0.07). At multivariable analysis, younger (odds ratio: 1.60; 95% confidence interval: 0.86 to 3.01; p = 0.14) and older age (odds ratio: 1.09; 95% confidence interval: 0.66 to 1.80; p = 0.75) were not independently associated with in-hospital mortality using the middle-aged group as a reference. There were no differences in 60-day mortality rates among groups.

Conclusions: A substantial proportion of TTS patients are younger than 50 years of age. TTS is associated with severe complications requiring intensive care, particularly in younger patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jacc.2020.02.057DOI Listing
April 2020

Cardiac imaging in cardiotoxicity: a focus on clinical practice.

Heart Fail Rev 2021 Sep;26(5):1175-1187

Mid-German Heart Center, Department of Internal Medicine III, Division of Cardiology, Angiology and Intensive Medical Care, University Hospital Halle, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, 06120, Halle (Saale), Germany.

Cancer therapeutics induced cardiotoxicity has emerged as an important factor of long-term adverse cardiovascular outcomes in survivors of various malignant diseases. Early detection of myocardial injury in the setting of cancer treatment is important for the initiation of targeted cardioprotective therapy, in order to prevent irreversible cardiac dysfunction and heart failure, while not withholding a potentially life-saving cancer therapy. Cardiac imaging techniques including echocardiography, cardiac magnetic resonance, and nuclear cardiac imaging are the main tools for the identification of cardiotoxicity. There is also growing evidence for the detection of subclinical cardiac dysfunction in cancer patients by speckle tracking echocardiography. In this review article, we focus on current and emerging data regarding the role of cardiac imaging for the detection of changes in myocardial function related with cancer treatment in clinical practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10741-020-09952-wDOI Listing
September 2021

Dual device closure of a bilobar left atrial appendage with a plug (Watchman 2.5™ 30 mm) and a pacifier (Amulet™ 20 mm) device.

Hellenic J Cardiol 2021 Jan-Feb;62(1):81-83. Epub 2020 Apr 15.

Mid-German Heart Center, Department of Internal Medicine III (KIM III), Division of Cardiology, Angiology and Intensive Medical Care, University Hospital Halle, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, D-06120 Halle (Saale), Germany. Electronic address:

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.hjc.2020.03.005DOI Listing
April 2020

Emerging trends in cardiovascular research: HFpEF in the spotlight. A bibliometric analysis of the years 2009-2016.

Minerva Med 2021 Aug 12;112(4):506-513. Epub 2020 Mar 12.

Clinic of Internal Medicine II, Department of Cardiology, Paracelsus Medical University, Salzburg, Austria.

Introduction: Up to 50% of patients suffering from acute decompensated heart failure show normal or slightly reduced left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF). This syndrome, which is known as heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) is associated with increasing age. Epidemiological studies could portrait an increasing importance and an even emerging prevalence in the past decades. Still, there is currently no evidenced based medical treatment option available. Our aims were to identify upcoming trends and emerging concepts and to point out important centers in the global research of HFpEF.

Evidence Acquisition: We performed a bibliometric study on current science in the field of HFpEF to identify study characteristics, impact factors and the countries of origin of basic and clinical studies that were published within the years 2009 to 2016. We further prepared density equalizing maps for visualization of the obtained data.

Evidence Synthesis: A total of 5413 studies was screened, of which 794 were found eligible. The scientific output in clinical studies rose from 25 in 2009 to 165 in 2016. Most of the publications had a clinical topic, followed by studies on new imaging techniques. Basic research trials were by far beyond. The USA, Japan and Germany were identified as the most important national contributors to global scientific output.

Conclusions: This first bibliometric study in the field of HFpEF shows a substantial increase of research within the last decade, mainly in the USA, Japan, and continental Europe. As an ongoing therapeutic trend in this field, we identified RAAS-blockade and 5-phosphodiesterase-inhibition.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S0026-4806.20.06447-2DOI Listing
August 2021

Systematic review on left atrial appendage closure with the LAmbre device in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation.

BMC Cardiovasc Disord 2020 02 12;20(1):78. Epub 2020 Feb 12.

Mid-German Heart Center, Department of Internal Medicine III (KIM-III), Division of Cardiology, Angiology and Intensive Medical Care, University Hospital Halle, Martin-Luther-University Halle, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, D-06120, Halle (Saale), Germany.

Background: Percutaneous closure (LAAC) of the left atrial appendage (LAA) is an efficacious preventive procedure for patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) and considerable bleeding risk. We sought to systematically review the available LAAC data on the novel occluder device LAmbre™.

Methods: For this systematic review, a search of the literature was conducted by 3 independent reviewers, reporting the safety and therapeutic success of LAAC in patients being treated with a LAmbre™. Publications reporting the safety and therapeutic success of LAAC using LAmbre™ in n > 5 patients were included.

Results: The literature search retrieved n = 10 publications, encompassing n = 403 NVAF patients treated with a LAmbre™ LAAC, with relevant data regarding safety and therapeutic success of the procedure. The mean CHADS-VASc Score was 4.0 + 0.9, and the mean HAS-BLED score was 3.4 + 0.5. The implantation success was 99.7%, with a mean procedure time of 45.4 ± 18.7 min, and a fluoroscopy time of 9.6 ± 5.9 min, and a contrast agent volume of 96.7 ± 0.7 ml. The anticoagulation regimen was switched to DAPT post procedure in the majority of the patients (96.8%). Partial and full recapture were done in 45.5% and in 25.6%, respectively. Major complications were reported in 2.9%, with 0.3% mortality, 1.7% pericardial tamponade, 0.3% stroke, and 0.6% major bleeding complications; no device embolization was observed. During follow up at 6 or 12 months, major adverse cardiovascular events were reported in 3.3%: Stroke or TIA in 1.7%, thrombus formation on the device in 0.7%, and residual flow > 5 mm in 1.0%. In some publications, the favorable implantion properties of the LAmbre™ for difficult anatomies such as shallow or multilobular LAA anatomies were described.

Conclusions: This systematic review on the LAmbre™ LAA-occluder including n = 403 NVAF patients demonstrates an excellent implantion success rate, promising follow-up clinical data, and favorable properties for also challenging LAA anatomies,. While its design seems to be helpful in preventing device embolization, pericardial tamponade may not be substantially reduced by the LAmbre™ as compared with other established LAAC devices. Further larger prospective multicenter registries and randomized trials are needed to scrutinize the value of the LAmbre™ compared with established LAAC devices.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12872-020-01349-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7017553PMC
February 2020

Comprehensive multimodality characterization of hemodynamically significant and non-significant coronary lesions using invasive and noninvasive measures.

PLoS One 2020 31;15(1):e0228292. Epub 2020 Jan 31.

Charité Campus Benjamin Franklin, Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Klinik für Kardiologie, Berlin, Germany.

Background: There is limited knowledge about morphological molecular-imaging-derived parameters to further characterize hemodynamically relevant coronary lesions.

Objective: The aim of this study was to describe and differentiate specific parameters between hemodynamically significant and non-significant coronary lesions using various invasive and non-invasive measures.

Methods: This clinical study analyzed patients with symptoms suggestive of coronary artery disease (CAD) who underwent native T1-weighted CMR and gadofosveset-enhanced CMR as well as invasive coronary angiography. OCT of the culprit vessel to determine the plaque type was performed in a subset of patients. Functional relevance of all lesions was examined using quantitative flow reserve (QFR-angiography). Hemodynamically significant lesions were defined as lesions with a QFR <0.8. Signal intensity (contrast-to-noise ratios; CNRs) on native T1-weighted CMR and gadofosveset-enhanced CMR was defined as a measure for intraplaque hemorrhage and endothelial permeability, respectively.

Results: Overall 29 coronary segments from 14 patients were examined. Segments containing lesions with a QFR <0.8 (n = 9) were associated with significantly higher signal enhancement on Gadofosveset-enhanced CMR as compared to segments containing a lesions without significant stenosis (lesion-QFR>0.8; n = 19) (5.32 (4.47-7.02) vs. 2.42 (1.04-5.11); p = 0.042). No differences in signal enhancement were seen on native T1-weighted CMR (2.2 (0.68-6.75) vs. 2.09 (0.91-6.57), p = 0.412). 66.7% (4 out of 6) of all vulnerable plaque and 33.3% (2 out of 6) of all non-vulnerable plaque (fibroatheroma) as assessed by OCT were hemodynamically significant lesions.

Conclusion: The findings of this pilot study suggest that signal enhancement on albumin-binding probe-enhanced CMR but not on T1-weighted CMR is associated with hemodynamically relevant coronary lesions.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0228292PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6994007PMC
April 2020

Impact of aspirin on takotsubo syndrome: a propensity score-based analysis of the InterTAK Registry.

Eur J Heart Fail 2020 02 20;22(2):330-337. Epub 2019 Dec 20.

Department of Internal Medicine III, Heart Center University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany.

Aims: The aim of the present study was to investigate the impact of aspirin on prognosis in takotsubo syndrome (TTS).

Methods And Results: Patients from the International Takotsubo (InterTAK) Registry were categorized into two groups based on aspirin prescription at discharge. A comparison of clinical outcomes between groups was performed using an adjusted analysis with propensity score (PS) stratification; results from the unadjusted analysis were also reported to note the effect of the PS adjustment. Major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events (MACCE: a composite of death, myocardial infarction, TTS recurrence, stroke or transient ischaemic attack) were assessed at 30-day and 5-year follow-up. A total of 1533 TTS patients with known status regarding aspirin prescription at discharge were included. According to the adjusted analysis based on PS stratification, aspirin was not associated with a lower hazard of MACCE at 30-day [hazard ratio (HR) 1.24, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.50-3.04, P = 0.64] or 5-year follow-up (HR 1.11, 95% CI 0.78-1.58, P = 0.58). These results were confirmed by sensitivity analyses performed with alternative PS-based methods, i.e. covariate adjustment and inverse probability of treatment weighting.

Conclusion: In the present study, no association was found between aspirin use in TTS patients and a reduced risk of MACCE at 30-day and 5-year follow-up. These findings should be confirmed in adequately powered randomized controlled trials. ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01947621.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ejhf.1698DOI Listing
February 2020

Adherence To Lipid-Lowering Therapy In Patients With Coronary Heart Disease From The State Of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany.

Vasc Health Risk Manag 2019 31;15:477-483. Epub 2019 Oct 31.

Paracelsus Harz-Clinic Bad Suderode, Quedlinburg, Germany.

Objectives: Treatment with lipid-lowering therapy (LLT) such as statins, cholesterol absorption inhibitors, or PCSK9 inhibitors is of major importance for the survival of patients with atherosclerotic diseases, and adherence to LLT is essential for treatment success. The intention of this study was to investigate adherence to LLT in patients with coronary heart disease (CHD) in a 12-month follow-up period in Saxony-Anhalt, the state with the highest incidence and mortality for CHD in Germany.

Patients And Methods: Data were taken from 542 hospitalized patients with angiographically documented CHD who were prospectively included in this study conducted in the Department of Medicine III of the University Clinics (Halle). We collected data concerning medication at discharge and after 3 and 12 months.

Results: A total of 542 patients were included in this study. Mean age was 69.2 ± 11.8 years. In all, 68.8% were males, 165 (30.4%) were smokers, 39.7% suffered from diabetes, and 86.9% had arterial hypertension. The follow-up time of this study was 12 months. At discharge, 463 patients (85.4%) were being treated with a statin. After 3 months 409 (75.5%) and after 12 months, 395 patients (72.9%) were still on statin therapy, respectively. In total treatment, adherence for the statin medication decreased by 15.7% in 12 months. Kaplan-Meier analyses showed that survival, taken as freedom of death from any cause, decreased significantly if statin treatment was stopped (p=0.001). This was confirmed by multivariate Cox regression (HR 1.78, p=0.012). Ezetemibe was prescribed for 56 patients at discharge (10.3%). After 3 months, 40 patients (7.4%) were still taking ezetemibe. After 12 months, adherence to ezetemibe treatment decreased to 4.1% (22 patients).

Conclusion: During follow-up for 3 and 12 months, adherence for statin therapy decreased by 15.7% and for ezetemibe by 46.6%. Here, low adherence to statin therapy was associated with fatal outcome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/VHRM.S197089DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6827502PMC
February 2020

Cardiac amyloidosis: in search of the ideal diagnostic tool.

Herz 2021 Apr 3;46(Suppl 1):9-14. Epub 2019 Dec 3.

Alexandra's Hospital, Athens, Greece.

Background: Cardiac amyloidosis (CA) is due to amyloid deposition in the myocardium. Transthyretin (ATTR) and light-chain (AL) amyloidosis are the main types of CA. Here, we present the clinical and imaging findings in patients with CA and discuss the controversies with the aim of finding the ideal diagnostic tool.

Methods: Ten patients suspected of having CA on the basis of electrocardiographic (ECG) and echocardiographic findings were evaluated via cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging (CMR; 1.5 T) using cine, late gadolinium enhancement (LGE), T1, T2 mapping, and extracellular volume fraction. N‑terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) levels were also assessed in all patients.

Results: All ten patients had an echocardiogram suggestive of CA. The CMR study documented ventricular hypertrophy leading to small ventricular volumes, as assessed by echocardiography. Diffuse subendocardial LGE, supporting the diagnosis of CA, was identified in all except one patient, who had subepicardial LGE due to myocarditis that was verified by endomyocardial biopsy (EMB). Right ventricular (RV) involvement was identified in four of the ten patients, whose condition deteriorated rapidly over the next 6 months. The NT-proBNP levels were >332 pg/ml in all except two patients. Light-chain amyloidosis was identified via fat tissue biopsy in two patients and through renal biopsy in one patient. In two patients with positive technetium-99m, EMB confirmed the diagnosis of ATTR.

Conclusion: NT-proBNP may be a sensitive but nonspecific biomarker for assessing CA. However, CMR is the only imaging modality that can assess the pathophysiologic background of cardiac hypertrophy and the severity of CA, irrespective of NT-proBNP level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00059-019-04871-5DOI Listing
April 2021

Friedreich's Ataxia: Case series and the Additive Value of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance.

J Neuromuscul Dis 2020 ;7(1):61-67

First Department of Paediatrics, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Aghia Sophia Children's Hospital, Athens, Greece.

BackgroundFriedreich's ataxia (FA) is an autosomal-recessive neurodegenerative disease characterised by neurologic, cardiac and endocrine abnormalities. Currently, Friedreich cardiomyopathy (FA-CM) staging is based on early ECG findings, high sensitivity troponin (hsTNT) ≥14 ng/ml and echocardiographic left ventricular (LV) morphologic and functional evaluation. However, further parameters, accessible only by cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR), such as myocardial oedema, perfusion defects, replacement and/or diffuse myocardial fibrosis, may have a place in the staging of FA-CA. Our aim was to elucidate the additive value of CMR in FA-CM.MethodsThree FA cases were assessed using ECG, 24 h Holter recording, hsTNT, routine ECHO including wall dimension, valvular and ventricular function evaluation and CMR using 1.5T Ingenia system. Ventricular volumes-function, wall dimensions and fibrosis imaging using late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) was performed.ResultsAll FA patients had non-specific ECG changes, almost normal 24 h Holter recording, mild hypertrophy with normal function assessed by echocardiography and increased hsTNT. However, the CMR evaluation revealed the presence of LGE >5% of LV mass, indicative of severe fibrosis. Therefore, the FA patients were re-categorized as having severe FA-CA, although their LVEF remained normal.ConclusionThe combination of classical diagnostic indices and CMR may reveal early asymptomatic FA-CM and motivate the early initiation of cardiac treatment. Furthermore, these indices can be also used to validate specific treatment targets in FA, potentially useful in the prevention of FA-CM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3233/JND-180373DOI Listing
October 2020

The pivotal role of cardiovascular imaging in the identification and risk stratification of non-compaction cardiomyopathy patients.

Heart Fail Rev 2020 11;25(6):1007-1015

Mid-German Heart Center, Department of Internal Medicine III (KIM-III), Division of Cardiology, Angiology and Intensive Medical Care, University Hospital Halle, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, 06120, Halle (Saale), Germany.

Non-compaction cardiomyopathy (NCM) is a heterogeneous myocardial disease that can finally lead to heart failure, arrhythmias, and/or embolic events. Therefore, early diagnosis and treatment is of paramount importance. Furthermore, genetic assessment and counseling are crucial for individual risk assessment and family planning. Echocardiography is the first-line imaging modality. However, it is hampered by interobserver variability, depends among others on the quality of the acoustic window, cannot assess reliably the right ventricle and the apex, and cannot provide tissue characterization. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) provides a 3D approach allowing imaging of the entire heart, including both left and right ventricle, with low operator variability or limitations due to patient's body structure. Furthermore, tissue characterization, using late gadolinium enhancement (LGE), allows the detection of fibrotic areas possibly representing the substrate for potentially lethal arrhythmias, predicts the severity of LV systolic dysfunction, and differentiates apical thrombus from fibrosis. Conversely, besides being associated with high costs, CMR has long acquisition/processing times, lack of expertise among cardiologists/radiologists, and limited availability. Additionally, in cases of respiratory and/or cardiac motion artifacts or arrhythmias, the cine images may be blurred. However, CMR cannot be applied to patients with not CMR-compatible implanted devices and LGE may be not available in patients with severely reduced GFR. Nevertheless, native T1 mapping can provide detailed tissue characterization in such cases. This tremendous potential of CMR makes this modality the ideal tool for better risk stratification of NCM patient, based not only on functional but also on tissue characterization information.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10741-019-09898-8DOI Listing
November 2020

Vibrational spectroscopy as a powerful tool for follow-up immunoadsorption therapy treatment of dilated cardiomyopathy - a case report.

Analyst 2020 Jan 29;145(2):486-496. Epub 2019 Nov 29.

Institute of Physical Chemistry and Abbe Center of Photonics, Helmholtzweg 4, Friedrich-Schiller University, D-07743, Jena, Germany. and Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology, Albert-Einstein-Straße 9, D-07745 Jena, Germany and Center for Sepsis Control and Care, Jena University Hospital, Am Klinikum 1, D-07747 Jena, Germany and Mid-German Heart Center, Department of Internal Medicine III (KIM-III), Division of Cardiology, Angiology and Intensive Medical Care, University Hospital Halle, Martin-Luther-University Halle, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, D-06120 Halle (Saale), Germany and InfectoGnostics Research Campus Jena, Centre of Applied Research, Philosophenweg 7, D-07743 Jena, Germany.

Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a leading cardiomyopathy condition and is the leading reason for heart transplantation. Due to high etiologic and genetic heterogeneity of the pathologies, different therapeutic treatment strategies are available and have been successful for different treatments. Immunoadsorption (IA) therapy removes the circulating anticardiac antibodies and improves the left ventricular function in substantial proportion of DCM patients. Powerful, non-invasive analytical tools are highly desired to investigate the efficiency and success of IA therapy. In this contribution, we followed the changes of a female DCM patient undergoing IA therapy at different treatment time points in a label-free, non-invasive manner from blood samples (plasma and serum) on the basis of vibrational spectroscopy (Raman scattering and IR absorption). Chemometric methods, including dimension reduction and statistical modeling, were used to interpret spectral data. The impact of different time points of the IA treatment can be identified in both the plasma and serum, using both techniques, with high accuracy. The removal of antibodies of immunoglobulin G (IgG) group during IA therapy and their restoration was reflected in both Raman and FTIR spectra. Relative changes in the spectral bands assigned to IgG agreed well with the immunoturbidimetry measurement of total IgG. Successful clinical treatment was accompanied by spectral differences between vibrational spectra obtained at initial disease state and 11 months after the IA treatment. The long-term follow-up of the patient reveals the stabilization of the health state after therapy. It is noteworthy that the treatment time points were distinguished with a better accuracy using spectra from plasma compared to those from serum samples, which might indicate the involvement of corresponding proteins in the coagulation. Vibrational spectroscopy is a powerful tool for personalized medicine to follow-up the treatment success of IA therapy for the DCM disorder.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/c9an01696aDOI Listing
January 2020

Intraventricular Thrombus Formation and Embolism in Takotsubo Syndrome: Insights From the International Takotsubo Registry.

Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 2020 01 26;40(1):279-287. Epub 2019 Nov 26.

Service de cardiologie, Hôpitaux Universitaires de Genève, Switzerland (P. Meyer, J.D.A.).

Objective: Takotsubo syndrome (TTS) is characterized by acute left ventricular dysfunction, which can contribute to intraventricular thrombus and embolism. Still, prevalence and clinical impact of thrombus formation and embolic events on outcome of TTS patients remain unclear. This study aimed to investigate clinical features and outcomes of patients with and without intraventricular thrombus or embolism. Additionally, factors associated with thrombus formation or embolism, as well as predictors for mortality, were identified. Approach and Results: TTS patients enrolled in the International Takotsubo Registry at 28 centers in Australia, Europe, and the United States were dichotomized according to the occurrence/absence of intraventricular thrombus or embolism. Patients with intraventricular thrombus or embolism were defined as the ThrombEmb group. Of 1676 TTS patients, 56 (3.3%) patients developed intraventricular thrombus and/or embolism following TTS diagnosis (median time interval, 2.0 days [range, 0-38 days]). Patients in the ThrombEmb group had a different clinical profile including lower left ventricular ejection fraction, higher prevalence of the apical type, elevated levels of troponin and inflammatory markers, and higher prevalence of vascular disease. In a Firth bias-reduced penalized-likelihood logistic regression model apical type, left ventricular ejection fraction ≤30%, previous vascular disease, and a white blood cell count on admission >10×10 cells/μL emerged as independent predictors for thrombus formation or embolism.

Conclusions: Intraventricular thrombus or embolism occur in 3.3% of patients in the acute phase of TTS. A simple risk score including clinical parameters associated with intraventricular thrombus formation or embolism identifies patients at increased risk.

Clinical Trial Registration: URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01947621.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/ATVBAHA.119.313491DOI Listing
January 2020

The differential statin effect on cytokine production of monocytes or macrophages is mediated by differential geranylgeranylation-dependent Rac1 activation.

Cell Death Dis 2019 11 21;10(12):880. Epub 2019 Nov 21.

Universitätsklinik und Poliklinik für Innere Medizin III, Universitätsmedizin Halle (Saale), Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, 06120, Halle (Saale), Germany.

Monocytes and macrophages contribute to pathogenesis of various inflammatory diseases, including auto-inflammatory diseases, cancer, sepsis, or atherosclerosis. They do so by production of cytokines, the central regulators of inflammation. Isoprenylation of small G-proteins is involved in regulation of production of some cytokines. Statins possibly affect isoprenylation-dependent cytokine production of monocytes and macrophages differentially. Thus, we compared statin-dependent cytokine production of lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated freshly isolated human monocytes and macrophages derived from monocytes by overnight differentiation. Stimulated monocytes readily produced tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-6, and interleukin-1β. Statins did not alter cytokine production of LPS-stimulated monocytes. In contrast, monocyte-derived macrophages prepared in the absence of statin lost the capacity to produce cytokines, whereas macrophages prepared in the presence of statin still produced cytokines. The cells expressed indistinguishable nuclear factor-kB activity, suggesting involvement of separate, statin-dependent regulation pathways. The presence of statin was necessary during the differentiation phase of the macrophages, indicating that retainment-of-function rather than costimulation was involved. Reconstitution with mevalonic acid, farnesyl pyrophosphate, or geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate blocked the retainment effect, whereas reconstitution of cholesterol synthesis by squalene did not. Inhibition of geranylgeranylation by GGTI-298, but not inhibition of farnesylation or cholesterol synthesis, mimicked the retainment effect of the statin. Inhibition of Rac1 activation by the Rac1/TIAM1-inhibitor NSC23766 or by Rac1-siRNA (small interfering RNA) blocked the retainment effect. Consistent with this finding, macrophages differentiated in the presence of statin expressed enhanced Rac1-GTP-levels. In line with the above hypothesis that monocytes and macrophages are differentially regulated by statins, the CD14/CD16-, merTK-, CXCR1-, or CD163-expression (M2-macrophage-related) correlated inversely to the cytokine production. Thus, monocytes and macrophages display differential Rac1-geranylgeranylation-dependent functional capacities, that is, statins sway monocytes and macrophages differentially.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41419-019-2109-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6872739PMC
November 2019

Clinical Predictors and Prognostic Impact of Recovery of Wall Motion Abnormalities in Takotsubo Syndrome: Results From the International Takotsubo Registry.

J Am Heart Assoc 2019 11 1;8(21):e011194. Epub 2019 Nov 1.

Department of Cardiology Kantonsspital Lucerne Lucerne Switzerland.

Background Left ventricular (LV) recovery in takotsubo syndrome (TTS) occurs over a wide-ranging interval, varying from hours to weeks. We sought to investigate the clinical predictors and prognostic impact of recovery time for TTS patients. Methods and Results TTS patients from the International Takotsubo Registry were included in this study. Cut-off for early LV recovery was determined to be 10 days after the acute event. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess factors associated with the absence of early recovery. In-hospital outcomes and 1-year mortality were compared for patients with versus without early recovery. We analyzed 406 patients with comprehensive and serial imaging data regarding time to recovery. Of these, 191 (47.0%) had early LV recovery and 215 (53.0%) demonstrated late LV improvement. Patients without early recovery were more often male (12.6% versus 5.2%; =0.011) and presented more frequently with typical TTS (76.3% versus 67.0%, =0.040). Cardiac and inflammatory markers were higher in patients without early recovery than in those with early recovery. Patients without early recovery showed unfavorable 1-year outcome compared with patients with early recovery (=0.003). On multiple logistic regression, male sex, LV ejection fraction <45%, and acute neurologic disorders were associated with the absence of early recovery. Conclusions TTS patients without early LV recovery have different clinical characteristics and less favorable 1-year outcome compared with patients with early recovery. The factors associated with the absence of early recovery included male sex, reduced LV ejection fraction, and acute neurologic events. Clinical Trial Registration URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01947621.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.118.011194DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6898832PMC
November 2019

Phosphatidylserine (PS) and phosphatidylglycerol (PG) nanodispersions as potential anti-inflammatory therapeutics: Comparison of in vitro activity and impact of pegylation.

Nanomedicine 2020 01 25;23:102096. Epub 2019 Oct 25.

Institute of Pharmacy, Faculty of Natural Sciences I, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Germany. Electronic address:

Phosphatidylserine (PS) and phosphatidylglycerol (PG) are endogenous phospholipids with putative anti-inflammatory potential. However, studies comparing PS and PG are rare and were mainly conducted with phospholipid-dispersions of large size and broad distributions. Thus, we prepared small-sized PS- and PG-loaded liposomes exhibiting narrow distribution, and additionally studied the impact of liposome-pegylation on the reduction of the TNFα-production caused by the PS- and PG-liposomes. These PS- and PG-containing nanodispersions had a small size around 100nm and a narrow distribution (PDI<0.1). The liposome-dispersions showed no toxicity in NHDF- and 3T3-cells and virtually no hemolytic activity. They decreased the TNFα-production of LPS-(lipopolysaccharide)-stimulated mouse peritoneal macrophages in vitro. PG-liposomes always decreased the TNFα-levels more potently than PS-liposomes. Pegylation of PS- and PG-liposomes caused different Zeta potentials, but did not change biological activity. The results of the current study indicate a high potential of the tested formulations for phospholipid-based anti-inflammatory therapies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nano.2019.102096DOI Listing
January 2020

Authors' response to the letter on HREV-D-19-00059R-1: Advancements in the diagnostic workup, prognostic evaluation and treatment of Takotsubo syndrome.

Heart Fail Rev 2020 09;25(5):887-889

Mid-German Heart Center, Department of Internal Medicine III, Division of Cardiology, Angiology and Intensive Medical Care, University Hospital Halle, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Ernst-Grube-Strasse 40, D-06120, Halle (Saale), Germany.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10741-019-09861-7DOI Listing
September 2020
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