The latest medical research on Cardiology

The research magnet gathers the latest research from around the web, based on your specialty area. Below you will find a sample of some of the most recent articles from reputable medical journals about cardiology gathered by our medical AI research bot.

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Extracardiac Abnormalities of Preload Reserve: Mechanisms Underlying Exercise Limitation in Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction, Autonomic Dysfunction, and Liver Disease.

Circulation. Heart failure

While many of the cardiac limitations to exercise performance are now well-characterized, extracardiac limitations to exercise performance have bee...

Cardiac Microvascular Endothelial Cells in Pressure Overload-Induced Heart Disease.

Circulation. Heart failure

Chronic pressure overload predisposes to heart failure, but the pathogenic role of microvascular endothelial cells (MiVEC) remains unknown. We characterized transcriptional, metabolic, and functional adaptation of cardiac MiVEC to pressure overload in mice and patients with aortic stenosis (AS).

In Tie2-Gfp mice subjected to transverse aortic constriction or sham surgery, we performed RNA sequencing of isolated cardiac Gfp+-MiVEC and validated the signature in freshly isolated MiVEC from left ventricle outflow tract and right atrium of patients with AS. We next compared their angiogenic and metabolic profiles and finally correlated molecular and pathological signatures with clinical phenotypes of 42 patients with AS (50% women).

In mice, transverse aortic constriction induced progressive systolic dysfunction, fibrosis, and reduced microvascular density. After 10 weeks, 25 genes predominantly involved in matrix-regulation were >2-fold upregulated in isolated MiVEC. Increased transcript levels of Cartilage Intermediate Layer Protein (Cilp), Thrombospondin-4, Adamtsl-2, and Collagen1a1 were confirmed by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction and recapitulated in left ventricle outflow tract-derived MiVEC of AS (P<0.05 versus right atrium-MiVEC). Fatty acid oxidation increased >2-fold in left ventricle outflow tract-MiVEC, proline content by 130% (median, IQR, 58%-474%; P=0.008) and procollagen secretion by 85% (mean [95% CI, 16%-154%]; P<0.05 versus right atrium-MiVEC for all). The altered transcriptome in left ventricle outflow tract-MiVEC was associated with impaired 2-dimensional-vascular network formation and 3-dimensional-spheroid sprouting (P<0.05 versus right atrium-MiVEC), profibrotic ultrastructural changes, and impaired diastolic left ventricle function, capillary density and functional status, especially in female AS.

Pressure overload induces major transcriptional and metabolic adaptations in cardiac MiVEC resulting in excess interstitial fibrosis and impaired angiogenesis. Molecular rewiring of MiVEC is worse in women, compromises functional status, and identifies novel targets for intervention.

Defining Shock and Preshock for Mortality Risk Stratification in Cardiac Intensive Care Unit Patients.

Circulation. Heart failure

Previous studies have defined preshock as isolated hypotension or isolated hypoperfusion, whereas shock has been variably defined as hypoperfusion with or without hypotension. We aimed to evaluate the mortality risk associated with hypotension and hypoperfusion at the time of admission in a cardiac intensive care unit population.

We analyzed Mayo Clinic cardiac intensive care unit patients admitted between 2007 and 2015. Hypotension was defined as systolic blood pressure <90 mm Hg or mean arterial pressure <60 mm Hg, and hypoperfusion as admission lactate >2 mmol/L, oliguria, or rising creatinine. Associations between hypotension and hypoperfusion with hospital mortality were estimated using multivariable logistic regression.

Among 10 004 patients with a median age of 69 years, 43.1% had acute coronary syndrome, and 46.1% had heart failure. Isolated hypotension was present in 16.7%, isolated hypoperfusion in 15.3%, and 8.7% had both hypotension and hypoperfusion. Stepwise increases in hospital mortality were observed with hypotension and hypoperfusion compared with neither hypotension nor hypoperfusion (3.3%; all P<0.001): isolated hypotension, 9.3% (adjusted odds ratio, 1.7 [95% CI, 1.4-2.2]); isolated hypoperfusion, 17.2% (adjusted odds ratio, 2.3 [95% CI, 1.9-3.0]); both hypotension and hypoperfusion, 33.8% (adjusted odds ratio, 2.8 [95% CI, 2.1-3.6]). Adjusted hospital mortality in patients with isolated hypoperfusion was higher than in patients with isolated hypotension (P=0.02) and not significant different from patients with both hypotension and hypoperfusion (P=0.18).

Hypotension and hypoperfusion are both associated with increased mortality in cardiac intensive care unit patients. Hospital mortality is higher with isolated hypoperfusion or concomitant hypotension and hypoperfusion (classic shock). We contend that preshock should refer to isolated hypotension without hypoperfusion, while patients with hypoperfusion can be considered to have shock, irrespective of blood pressure.

Impairments in Blood Pressure Regulation and Cardiac Baroreceptor Sensitivity Among Patients With Heart Failure Supported With Continuous-Flow Left Ventricular Assist Devices.

Circulation. Heart failure

Continuous-flow (CF) left ventricular assist devices (LVADs) improve outcomes for patients with advanced heart failure (HF). However, the lack of a physiological pulse predisposes to side-effects including uncontrolled blood pressure (BP), and there are little data regarding the impact of CF-LVADs on BP regulation.

Twelve patients (10 males, 60±11 years) with advanced heart failure completed hemodynamic assessment 2.7±4.1 months before, and 4.3±1.3 months following CF-LVAD implantation. Heart rate and systolic BP via arterial catheterization were monitored during Valsalva maneuver, spontaneous breathing, and a 0.05 Hz repetitive squat-stand maneuver to characterize cardiac baroreceptor sensitivity. Plasma norepinephrine levels were assessed during head-up tilt at supine, 30o and 60o. Heart rate and BP were monitored during cardiopulmonary exercise testing.

Cardiac baroreceptor sensitivity, determined by Valsalva as well as Fourier transformation and transfer function gain of Heart rate and systolic BP during spontaneous breathing and squat-stand maneuver, was impaired before and following LVAD implantation. Norepinephrine levels were markedly elevated pre-LVAD and improved-but remained elevated post-LVAD (supine norepinephrine pre-LVAD versus post-LVAD: 654±437 versus 323±164 pg/mL). BP increased during cardiopulmonary exercise testing post-LVAD, but the magnitude of change was modest and comparable to the changes observed during the pre-LVAD cardiopulmonary exercise testing.

Among patients with advanced heart failure with reduced ejection fraction, CF-LVAD implantation is associated with modest improvements in autonomic tone, but persistent reductions in cardiac baroreceptor sensitivity. Exercise-induced increases in BP are blunted. These findings shed new light on mechanisms for adverse events such as stroke, and persistent reductions in functional capacity, among patients supported by CF-LVADs. Registration: URL:; Unique identifier: NCT03078972.

CRD-733, a Novel PDE9 (Phosphodiesterase 9) Inhibitor, Reverses Pressure Overload-Induced Heart Failure.

Circulation. Heart failure

Augmentation of NP (natriuretic peptide) receptor and cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) signaling has emerged as a therapeutic strategy in heart failure (HF). cGMP-specific PDE9 (phosphodiesterase 9) inhibition increases cGMP signaling and attenuates stress-induced hypertrophic heart disease in preclinical studies. A novel cGMP-specific PDE9 inhibitor, CRD-733, is currently being advanced in human clinical studies. Here, we explore the effects of chronic PDE9 inhibition with CRD-733 in the mouse transverse aortic constriction pressure overload HF model.

Adult male C57BL/6J mice were subjected to transverse aortic constriction and developed significant left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy after 7 days (P<0.001). Mice then received daily treatment with CRD-733 (600 mg/kg per day; n=10) or vehicle (n=17), alongside sham-operated controls (n=10).

CRD-733 treatment reversed existing LV hypertrophy compared with vehicle (P<0.001), significantly improved LV ejection fraction (P=0.009), and attenuated left atrial dilation (P<0.001), as assessed by serial echocardiography. CRD-733 prevented elevations in LV end diastolic pressures (P=0.037) compared with vehicle, while lung weights, a surrogate for pulmonary edema, were reduced to sham levels. Chronic CRD-733 treatment increased plasma cGMP levels compared with vehicle (P<0.001), alongside increased phosphorylation of Ser273 of cardiac myosin binding protein-C, a cGMP-dependent protein kinase I phosphorylation site.

The PDE9 inhibitor, CRD-733, improves key hallmarks of HF including LV hypertrophy, LV dysfunction, left atrial dilation, and pulmonary edema after pressure overload in the mouse transverse aortic constriction HF model. Additionally, elevated plasma cGMP may be used as a biomarker of target engagement. These findings support future investigation into the therapeutic potential of CRD-733 in human HF.

Metabolomic Profiles and Heart Failure Risk in Black Adults: Insights From the Jackson Heart Study.

Circulation. Heart failure

Heart failure (HF) is a heterogeneous disease characterized by significant metabolic disturbances; however, the breadth of metabolic dysfunction before the onset of overt disease is not well understood. The purpose of this study was to determine the association of circulating metabolites with incident HF to uncover novel metabolic pathways to disease.

We performed targeted plasma metabolomic profiling in a deeply phenotyped group of Black adults from the JHS (Jackson Heart Study; n=2199). We related metabolites associated with incident HF to established etiological mechanisms, including increased left ventricular mass index and incident coronary heart disease. Furthermore, we evaluated differential associations of metabolites with HF with preserved ejection fraction versus HF with reduced ejection fraction.

Metabolites associated with incident HF included products of posttranscriptional modifications of RNA, as well as polyamine and nitric oxide metabolism. A subset of metabolite-HF associations was independent of well-established HF pathways such as increased left ventricular mass index and incident coronary heart disease and included homoarginine (per 1 SD increase in metabolite level, hazard ratio, 0.77; P=1.2×10-3), diacetylspermine (hazard ratio, 1.34; P=3.4×10-3), and uridine (hazard ratio, 0.79; P, 3×10-4). Furthermore, metabolites involved in pyrimidine metabolism (orotic acid) and collagen turnover (N-methylproline) among others were part of a distinct metabolic signature that differentiated individuals with HF with preserved ejection fraction versus HF with reduced ejection fraction.

The integration of clinical phenotyping with plasma metabolomic profiling uncovered novel metabolic processes in nontraditional disease pathways underlying the heterogeneity of HF development in Black adults.

Automated E-Counseling for Chronic Heart Failure: CHF-CePPORT Trial.

Circulation. Heart failure

International task force statements advocate telehealth programs to promote health-related quality of life for patients with chronic heart failure (CHF). To that end, we evaluated the efficacy and usability of an automated e-counseling program.

This Canadian multi-site double-blind randomized trial assessed whether usual care plus either internet-based e-counseling (motivational and cognitive-behavioral tools for CHF self-care) or e-based conventional CHF self-care education (e-UC) improved 12-month Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire Overall Summary (KCCQ-OS). Secondary outcomes included program engagement (total logon weeks, logons, and logon hours), total CHF self-care behaviors, diet (fruit and vegetable servings), 6-minute walk test, and 4-day step count. The association between program engagement and health-related quality of life was assessed using KCCQ-OS tertiles.

We enrolled 231 patients, median age =59.5 years, 22% female, and elevated median KCCQ-OS=83.0 (interquartile range, 68-93). KCCQ-OS increase ≥5 points was not more prevalent for e-counseling, n=29 (29.6%) versus e-UC, n=32 (34.0%), P=0.51. E-Counseling versus e-UC increased total logon weeks (P=0.02), logon hours (P=0.001), and logons (P<0.001). Only e-counseling showed a positive association between 12-month KCCQ-OS tertile and logon weeks (P=0.04) and logon hours (P=0.004). E-Counseling increased CHF self-care behavior and diet but not 6-minute walk test or 4-day step count.

The primary KCCQ-OS end point was negative for this trial. Only e-counseling showed a positive association between program engagement and 12-month KCCQ-OS tertile, and it improved CHF self-care behavior and diet. Registration: URL: Unique identifier: NCT01864369.

Short- and long-term prognostic value of right ventricular function in patients with first acute ST elevation myocardial infarction treated by primary angioplasty.


Limited data are known about the prognostic value of right ventricle (RV) function in patients with first acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). The aim of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of RV dysfunction in predicting both in-hospital and long-term outcomes in these patients, irrespective of the site of necrosis.

We enrolled 502 consecutive patients with first acute STEMI treated with primary angioplasty and underwent echocardiography within 48 hours of admission. RV function was evaluated by RV myocardial performance index (RVMPI), RV fractional area change (RVFAC), tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE), pulsed tissue Doppler S' wave velocity, and RV global longitudinal strain (RVGLS) of the free wall. The occurrence of in-hospital major adverse cardiac events (MACE) and 1-year survival rate were recorded.

In MACE group, RVFAC, TAPSE, and RV S' wave velocity were lower. However, RVMPI, RVGLS, and TR Vmax. were higher than MACE free group (P < .001). In multivariable analysis adjusted for other variables that predicted adverse outcomes, RVFAC < 35% (P < .001), TAPSE < 17 mm (P < .001), RVGLS > -17% (P < .001), RV S' wave velocity < 9.5 cm/s (P = .02), RVMPI > 0.43 (P < .001), and TR Vmax. > 2.8 m/s (P = .01) were strong independent predictors of in-hospital MACE. Lower 1-year survival was noted in patients with RV dysfunction, documented by these cutoffs values.

RV dysfunction, evidenced by multiparametric echocardiography, is predictive for adverse in-hospital outcomes, and lower 1-year survival rate in first acute STEMI regardless of the site of necrosis.

A rare cause of newborn central cyanosis.


Pulmonary arteriovenous malformations are rare congenital vascular anomalies. They are usually associated with congenital hemorrhagic hemangioma. T...

Echocardiographic Evaluation of Right Ventricular Function and its Role in the Prognosis of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.

Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is associated with structural and mechanical changes in the pulmonary vascular bed that increase right ventricular (RV) afterload and subsequently right heart failure.

The aim of the study was to elucidate RV dysfunction at rest by echocardiography in a cohort of COPD patients and to study its impact on prognosis.

84 patients of COPD and 40 matching healthy controls were evaluated at baseline. Evaluation included clinical examination, pulmonary function tests; 6 minutes walk test and echocardiography. Patient with COPD were again evaluated after 6 months.

All echocardiographic parameters of RV function were significantly impaired in COPD patients as compared to controls. Clinical deterioration in COPD group was much more in patients with baseline abnormal RV function (89%) and patients with RV systolic pressure ≥35 mmHg (P = 0.018). All the six patients who died had three or more abnormal RV systolic function parameters.

RV myocardial performance index and basal strain showed largest difference between controls and COPD cases. Clinical deterioration was more common in patients with abnormal RV function parameters and pulmonary hypertension.

Detection of Functionally Significant Coronary Artery Disease: Role of Regional Post Systolic Shortening.

Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance

The main goal of this manuscript was to evaluate the diagnostic value of the global and regional postsystolic shortening (PSS) parameters, assessed by two-dimensional (2D) speckle-tracking echocardiography, at rest and during dobutamine stress for the detection of functionally significant coronary artery stenoses in patients with moderate pretest probability of stable coronary artery disease (CAD).

Dobutamine stress echocardiography (DSE) and adenosine stress myocardial perfusion imaging by cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR-MPI) were performed on 83 patients with moderate pretest probability of stable CAD and left ventricle ejection fraction ≥55%. CAD was defined as ≥50% diameter stenoses on invasive coronary artery angiography (CAA) validated as hemodynamically significant by CMR-MPI. According to invasive CAA and CMR-MPI results, patients were divided into two groups: Nonpathologic CAD (-) group: 38 (45.8%) and pathologic CAD (+) group: 45 (54.2%).

There were no significant differences in clinical characteristics, conventional 2D echocardiography between the two groups at rest and during low dobutamine dose. Regional postsystolic index (PSI) during recovery phase had the highest area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) (AUC 0.882, sensitivity 87%, specificity 92%) for the detection of functionally significant one-vessel disease. During high dobutamine dose, regional PSI had sensitivity 78% and specificity 81% (AUC 0.78) to detect significant CAD. Regional PSI remained the same tendency remains for the detection of multiple-vessel CAD. Other myocardial deformation parameters were less sensitive and specific during high dobutamine dose and recovery phase.

PSS parameters showed to be sensitive and specific in detecting hemodynamically significant coronary artery stenosis in patients with stable CAD with moderate pretest probability. The study revealed that the assessment of regional PSI performed during recovery improves the diagnostic accuracy of DSE for the detection of functionally significant CAD.

Value of Speckle Tracking Echocardiography for Early Detection of Left Ventricular Dysfunction in Patients with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.

Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance

Cardiac dysfunction due to systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) may be subclinical, but those patients are at high risk for developing clinical heart failure.

The aim of this study is to assess the role of speckle tracking echocardiography (STE) in the early detection of systolic dysfunction in SLE patients.

This was a case-control study. Participants were subdivided into two groups: Group 1 included 50 SLE patients and Group 2 included 50 healthy controls. Clinical evaluation, echocardiography, tissue Doppler, and STE were performed.

Global longitudinal strain (GLS) was significantly reduced in SLE group (-18.95 ± 2.02 vs. -21.4 ± 2.1, P < 0.001). However, there was no significant difference in left ventricular ejection fraction between both groups (P = 0.801). There was a significant positive correlation between the disease duration and age (r = 0.480, P < 0.001), pulmonary artery systolic pressure (PASP) (r = 0.628, P < 0.001), and GLS (%) (r = 0.417, P = 0.012). There was also a significant positive correlation between the disease activity index and GLS (%) (r = 0.7, P < 0.001) and PASP (r = 0.522, P < 0.001).

SLE group had GLS % lower than the control group, and this was statistically significant, denoting early systolic dysfunction. Longer duration and high SLE activity index significantly affect GLS. GLS is an excellent noninvasive tool for early detection of subclinical left ventricular systolic dysfunction in SLE patients.