Posts Tagged ‘Acute coronary syndrome’

Larry H. Bernstein, MD, FCAP, Curator

Leaders in Pharmaceutical Intelligence

Early discharge using single cardiac troponin and copeptin testing in patients
with suspected 
acute coronary syndrome (ACS): a randomized, controlled
clinical process study
M Mockel, J Searle, Christian Hamm, A Slagman, S Blankenberg, et al.
EurHeartJ Apr 2014.  http://dx.doi.org:/10.1093/eurheartj/ehu178

This randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluated whether a process with single
combined testing of copeptin and troponin at admission in patients with low-to-
intermediate risk and suspected acute coronary syndrome (ACS)  does not lead to a higher proportion of major adverse cardiac events (MACE) than
the current standard process (non-inferiority design). After clinical work-up and  single combined testing of troponin and copeptin to rule-out AMI,  early  discharge
of low- to intermediate risk patients with suspected ACS seems to be safe and has
the potential to shorten length of stay in the ED.

Diagnostic accuracy of combined cardiac troponin and copeptin
assessment for 
early rule-out of myocardial infarction: a systematic
review and meta-analysis
T Raskovalova, R Twerenbold, PO Collinson, T Keller, H Bouvaist, et al.
EurHeartJ: Acute Cardiovascular Care 2014; 3(1): 18-27.

This systematic review aimed to investigate the diagnostic accuracy of combined
cardiac troponin (cTn) and  copeptin assessment in comparison to cTn alone for
early rule-out of acute myocardial infarction (AMI).  In 15  studies totalling 8740
patients (prevalence of   AMI 16%), adding copeptin improved the sensitivity
of cTn assays  (from 0.87 to 0.96, p=0.003) at the expense of lower specificity
(from 0.84 to 0.56, p<0.001).

In 12 studies providing for 6988 patients without ST-segment elevation,
the summary sensitivity and specificity  estimates were 0.95 (95% CI 0.89 to
0.98) and 0.57 (95% CI 0.49 to   0.65) for the combined assessment of cTn
and copeptin. When a high-sensitivity cTnT assay was used in combination
with copeptin,  the summary sensitivity  and specificity estimates were 0.98
(95% CI 0.96 to 1.00) and 0.50 (95% CI 0.42 to 0.58). The result indicates
that  copeptin significantly improves baseline cTn sensitivity.

Diagnostic accuracy of copeptin sensitivity and specificity in patients with
suspected non-ST-elevation myocardial infarction with troponin I below
99th centile at presentation
J Duchenne, S Mestres, N Dublanchet, N Combaret, G Marceau, et al.
BMJ Open 2014;4:e004449.

To our knowledge, our prospective multicentric study is the only one that includes
only patients with suspected non-ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction and
high-sensitive cardiac troponin I below  the 99th centile  at presentation to the
emergency department, to limit spectrum bias. Our study included only patients
with negative ultrasensitive troponin at admission. However, this is the only group
of patients for which a multimarker rule-out strategy could add diagnostic value.
Serial clinical, electrographical and biochemical investigations were performed at
admission and after 2, 4, 6 and 12 h. Hs-cTnT was measured using an assay with
Dimension VISTA, Siemens. Copeptin was measured by the BRAHMS copeptin-us
assay on the KRYPTOR Compact Plus system. The follow-up period was 90 days.

The final diagnosis was adjudicated blinded to copeptin result. During 12 months,
102 patients were analysed. Final diagnosis was NSTEMI for 7.8% (n=8), unstable
angina for 3.9% (n=4), cardiac but non coronary artery disease for 8.8% (n=9),
non-cardiac chest pain for 52% (n=53) and unknown for 27.5% (n=28).

There was no statistical difference for copeptin values between patients with
NSTEMI and others (respectively 5.5 pmol/L IQR (3.1–7.9) and 6.5 pmol/L IQR
(3.9–12.1), p=0.49). Only one patient with NSTEMI had a copeptin value
above the cut-off
 of 95th centile at admission.

In this study, copeptin does not add a diagnostic value at admission to ED for patients
with suspected acute coronary syndrome without ST-
segment elevation and with hs-cTnT below the 99th centile.

Can a Second Measurement of Copeptin Improve Acute Myocardial
Infarction Rule Out?

N Marston, K Shah, C Mueller, Sean-Xavier Neath, R Christenson, J McCord, et al.
J Am Coll Cardiol. 2014;63(12_S):A202.  Presentation Number: 1226-242

Of the 494 patients analyzed, 378 (76.5%) had a persistently elevated copeptin at 2
hours and 116 patients (23.5%) had a copeptin that fell below the cutoff of 14 pmol/l.
The AMI rate was 6.1% when the second copeptin was elevated compared to 0%
when the second copeptin was not (p=.006), yielding a sensitivity of 100%. This
strategy identified 23.5% of patients with an intermediate risk who could be ruled
out for AMI while still in the ED. In contrast, a second troponin measurement had a
sensitivity of 74%. A negative second copeptin drawn 2 hours after presentation
demonstrated 100% sensitivity for AMI, allowing for effective rule out in this
intermediate risk cohort. This strategy identified nearly 25% of intermediate risk
patients who could be considered for discharge.

 The role of copeptin as a diagnostic and prognostic biomarker for risk
stratification in the emergency department.
Nickel CH, Bingisser R and Morgenthaler NG
BMC Medicine 2012, 10:7

Copeptin, the C-terminal part of the arginine vasopressin precursor peptide,
is a sensitive and stable surrogate marker for arginine vasopressin release.
Measurement of copeptin levels has been shown to be useful in a variety of
clinical scenarios, particularly as a prognostic marker in patients with acute
diseases such as lower respiratory tract infection, heart disease and stroke.

Read Full Post »

Titanium-nitric-oxide-coated bioactive stents in acute coronary syndrome

Reporter: Larry Bernstein, MD, FCAP

SOURCE: http://www.researchgate.net/publication/256607204_Stent-oriented_versus_patient-oriented_outcome_in_patients_undergoing_early_percutaneous_coronary_intervention_for_acute_coronary_syndrome_2-year_report_from_the_BASE-ACS_trial


Titanium-nitric-oxide-coated bioactive stents in acute coronary syndrome: towards a more clear landscape!

 Assisstant Professor of Cardiology, Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University, Egypt

With full interest, we read the Editorial “Nitric-oxide Coated Bioactive Titanium Stents: Safer and More Effective Than Second-generation Drug-eluting Stents?” by Sabaté et al 1. I’d like to commend the authors for publishing this interesting analysis of recently published studies – including the BASE ACS randomized controlled trial– comparing titanium-nitric-oxide-coated bioactive stents (NO-BAS) with drug-eluting stents. Yet, since I’m one of the authors of the BASE ACS trial, I’d like to clarify some points. First, the BASE ACS trial was adequately powered to detect a difference of the primary composite endpoint at 12 months (827 patients), with a formal statistical power calculation 2. Second, as the authors reported, the NO-BAS were non-inferior to cobalt-chromium-based everolimus-eluting stents (EES) for the primary composite endpoint of major adverse cardiac events (MACE) that included cardiac death, non-fatal myocardial infarction (MI), and ischemia-driven target lesion revascularization, in patients presenting with the full spectrum of acute coronary syndrome at 12-month follow-up 2. The 12-month rates of the individual secondary endpoints of non-fatal MI and definite stent thrombosis (ST) were lower in patients who received NO-BAS versus those who received EES (2.2% versus 5.9%, and 0.7% versus 2.2%, p= 0.007 and 0.07, respectively) 3. And whereas the definition of MI adopted by the BASE ACS trial (based on CK MB or troponin ≥2 times the upper reference limit) was different from that employed in the EXAMINATION trial (extended definition of the World Health Organization), it cannot be held responsible for the difference in MI rates between NO-BAS and EES in the same BASE ACS trial, since the definition was equally applied to the two trial arms 2,3. Third, the early (within 30 days) divergence of safety endpoints between the 2 stent arms is hard to explain merely in view of peri-procedural bivalirudin monotherapy. In fact, out of 9 cases (2.2%) of definite ST in the EES arm, 3 were acute (within 24 hr); out of these 3, only 2 received peri-procedural bivalirudin as a sole anticoagulant 2. Moreover, peri-procedural bivalirudin use was comparable between the 2 stent arms: 14.1% versus 15.1% in NO-BAS versus EES arms, respectively. Furthermore, angiographic success was achieved in 99.8% in both stent arms; hence, technical issues (distal dissection, stent underexpansion) were probably similar in the 2 stent arms 2. More importantly, the rates of non-fatal MI and definite ST continued to diverge after one year: at 2-year follow-up, they were 2.9% versus 7.1%, and 1.0% versus 2.7%, p= 0.005 and 0.05, for NO-BAS versus EES, respectively 4. Since technical issues generally operate early (within 1 month) after stent implantation; therefore, they cannot fully account for the ‘very late’ events. References

1. Sabaté M, Brugaletta S. Nitric-oxide Coated Bioactive Titanium Stents: Safer and More Effective Than Second-generation Drug-eluting Stents? Rev Esp Cardiol. 2014;67:511-3. 2. Karjalainen PP, Niemela M, Airaksinen KEJ, et al. A prospective randomized comparison of titanium-nitride-oxide-coated bioactive stents with everolimus-eluting stents in acute coronary syndrome: the BASE-ACS trial. EuroIntervention. 2012;8:1769–74. 3. Sabate M, Cequier A, In˜iguez A, et al. Everolimus-eluting stent versus bare-metal stent in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (EXAMINATION): 1 year results of a randomised controlled trial. Lancet. 2012;380:1482–90. 4. Romppanen H, Nammas W, Kervinen K, et al. Stent-oriented versus patient-oriented outcome in patients undergoing early percutaneous coronary intervention for acute coronary syndrome: 2-year report from the BASE-ACS trial. Ann Med. 2013;45:488-93.


 Pooled Analysis of Two Randomized Trials Comparing Titanium-nitride-oxide-coated Stent Versus Drug-eluting Stent in STEMI. Petri O. Tuomainenab, Jussi Siac, Wail Nammasb, Matti Niemeläd, Juhani K.E. Airaksinene, Fausto Biancarif, Pasi P. Karjalainen. Rev Esp Cardiol. 2014;67(7):531-7  http://dx.doi.org:/10.1016/j.rec.2014.01.024

KeywordsBioactive stents. Everolimus-eluting stents. Paclitaxel-eluting stents. ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction. Outcome.

Pooled Analysis of Two Randomized Trials Comparing Titanium-nitride-oxide-coated Stent Versus Drug-eluting Stent in STEMI

Petri O. Tuomainenab, Jussi Siac, Wail Nammasb, Matti Niemeläd, Juhani K.E. Airaksinene, Fausto Biancarif, Pasi P. Karjalainenb, a Department of Internal Medicine and Heart Center, Kuopio University Hospital and University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland b Department of Cardiology, Satakunta Central Hospital, Pori, Finland c Department of Cardiology, Kokkola Central Hospital, Kokkola, Finland d Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Cardiology, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland e Department of Medicine, Turku University Hospital, Turku, Finland f Division ofCardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, Oulu, Finland

Refers to


Bioactive stents. Everolimus-eluting stents. Paclitaxel-eluting stents. ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction. Outcome.


Introduction and objectivesWe performed a pooled analysis based on patient-level data from the TITAX-AMI and BASE-ACS trials to evaluate the outcome of titanium-nitride-oxide-coated bioactive stents vs drug-eluting stents in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction at 2-year follow-up. MethodsThe TITAX-AMI trial compared bioactive stents with paclitaxel-eluting stents in 425 patients with acute myocardial infarction. The BASE-ACS trial compared bioactive stents with everolimus-eluting stents in 827 patients with acute coronary syndrome. The primary endpoint for the pooled analysis was major adverse cardiac events: a composite of cardiac death, recurrent myocardial infarction, or ischemia-driven target lesion revascularization at 2-year follow-up. ResultsThe pooled analysis included 501 patients; 245 received bioactive stents, and 256 received drug-eluting stents. The pooled bioactive stent group was associated with a risk ratio of 0.85 for major adverse cardiac events (95% confidence interval, 0.53-1.35; P = .49) compared to the pooled drug-eluting stent group. Similarly, the pooled bioactive stent group was associated with a risk ratio of 0.71 for cardiac death (95% confidence interval, 0.26-1.95; P = .51), 0.44 for recurrent myocardial infarction (95% confidence interval, 0.20-0.97; P = .04), and 1.39 for ischemia-driven target lesion revascularization (95% confidence interval, 0.74-2.59; P = .30), compared to the pooled drug-eluting stent group. These results were confirmed by propensity-score adjusted analysis of the combined datasets. ConclusionsIn patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction, bioactive stents were associated with lower rates of recurrent myocardial infarction compared to drug-eluting stents at 2-year follow-up; yet, the rates of cardiac death and ischemia-driven target lesion revascularization were similar.

Read Full Post »

Introduction to e-Series A: Cardiovascular Diseases, Volume Four Part 2: Regenerative Medicine

Introduction to e-Series A: Cardiovascular Diseases, Volume Four Part 2: Regenerative Medicine

Author and Curator: Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP


Curator: Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN

This document is entirely devoted to medical and surgical therapies that have made huge strides in

  • simplification of interventional procedures,
  • reduced complexity, resulting in procedures previously requiring surgery are now done, circumstances permitting, by medical intervention.

This revolution in cardiovascular interventional therapy is regenerative medicine.  It is regenerative because it is largely driven by

  • the introduction into the impaired vasculature of an induced pleuripotent cell, called a stem cell, although
  • the level of differentiation may not be a most primitive cell line.

There is also a very closely aligned development in cell biology that extends beyond and including vascular regeneration that is called synthetic biology.  These developments have occurred at an accelerated rate in the last 15 years. The methods of interventional cardiology were already well developed in the mid 1980s.  This was at the peak of cardiothoracic bypass surgery.

Research on the endothelial cell,

  • endothelial cell proliferation,
  • shear flow in small arteries, especially at branch points, and
  • endothelial-platelet interactions

led to insights about plaque formation and vessel thrombosis.

Much was learned in biomechanics about the shear flow stresses on the luminal surface of the vasculature, and there was also

  • the concomitant discovery of nitric oxide,
  • oxidative stress, and
  • the isoenzymes of nitric oxide synthase (eNOS, iNOS, and nNOS).

It became a fundamental tenet of vascular biology that

  • atherogenesis is a maladjustment to oxidative stress not only through genetic, but also
  • non-genetic nutritional factors that could be related to the balance of omega (ω)-3 and omega (ω)-6 fatty acids,
  • a pro-inflammatory state that elicits inflammatory cytokines, such as, interleukin-6 (IL6) and c-reactive protein(CRP),
  • insulin resistance with excess carbohydrate associated with type 2 diabetes and beta (β) cell stress,
  • excess trans- and saturated fats, and perhaps
  • the now plausible colonic microbial population of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT).

There is also an association of abdominal adiposity,

  • including the visceral peritoneum, with both T2DM and with arteriosclerotic vessel disease,
  • which is presenting at a young age, and has ties to
  • the effects of an adipokine, adiponectin.

Much important work has already been discussed in the domain of cardiac catheterization and research done to

  • prevent atheroembolization.and beyond that,
  • research done to implant an endothelial growth matrix.

Even then, dramatic work had already been done on

  • the platelet structure and metabolism, and
  • this has transformed our knowledge of platelet biology.

The coagulation process has been discussed in detailed in a previous document.  The result was the development of a

  • new class of platelet aggregation inhibitors designed to block the activation of protein on the platelet surface that
  • is critical in the coagulation cascade.

In addition, the term long used to describe atherosclerosis, atheroma notwithstanding, is “hardening of the arteries”.  This is particularly notable with respect to mid-size arteries and arterioles that feed the heart and kidneys. Whether it is preceded by or develops concurrently with chronic renal insufficiency and lowered glomerular filtration rate is perhaps arguable.  However, there is now a body of evidence that points to

  • a change in the vascular muscularis and vessel stiffness, in addition to the endothelial features already mentioned.

This has provided a basis for

  • targeted pharmaceutical intervention, and
  • reduction in salt intake.

So we have a  group of metabolic disorders, which may alone or in combination,

  • lead to and be associated with the long term effects of cardiovascular disease, including
  • congestive heart failure.

This has been classically broken down into forward and backward failure,

  • depending on decrease outflow through the aorta (ejection fraction), or
  • decreased venous return through the vena cava,

which involves increased pulmonary vascular resistance and decreased return into the left atrium.

This also has ties to several causes, which may be cardiac or vascular. This document, as the previous, has four pats.  They are broadly:

  1. Stem Cells in Cardiovascular Diseases
  2. Regenerative Cell and Molecular Biology
  3. Therapeutics Levels In Molecular Cardiology
  4. Research Proposals for Endogenous Augmentation of circulating Endothelial Progenitor Cells (cEPCs)

As in the previous section, we start with the biology of the stem cell and the degeneration in cardiovascular diseases, then proceed to regeneration, then therapeutics, and finally – proposals for augmenting therapy with circulating endogenous endothelial progenitor cells (cEPCs).



stem cells























Key pathways involving NO

Key pathways involving NO





stem cell lin28

stem cellLlin28

1479-5876-10-175-1-l  translational research with feedback loops

Tranlational Research -Lab to Bedside



Read Full Post »

Diagnostic Value of Cardiac Biomarkers

Diagnostic Value of Cardiac Biomarkers

Author and Curator: Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP 

These presentations covered several views of the utilization of cardiac markers that have evolved for over 60 years.  The first stage was the introduction of enzymatic assays and isoenzyme measurements to distinguish acute hepatitis and acute myocardial infarction, which included lactate dehydrogenase (LD isoenzymes 1, 2) at a time that late presentation of the patient in the emergency rooms were not uncommon, with the creatine kinase isoenzyme MB declining or disappeared from the circulation.  The world health organization (WHO) standard definition then was the presence of two of three:

1. Typical or atypical precordial pressure in the chest, usually with radiation to the left arm

2. Electrocardiographic changes of Q-wave, not previously seen, definitive; ST- elevation of acute myocardial injury with repolarization;
T-wave inversion.

3. The release into the circulation of myocardial derived enzymes –
creatine kinase – MB (which was adapted to measure infarct size), LD-1,
both of which were replaced with troponins T and I, which are part of the actomyosin contractile apparatus.

The research on infarct size elicited a major research goal for early diagnosis and reduction of infarct size, first with fibrinolysis of a ruptured plaque, and this proceeded into the full development of a rapidly evolving interventional cardiology as well as cardiothoracic surgery, in both cases, aimed at removal of plaque or replacement of vessel.  Surgery became more imperative for multivessel disease, even if only one vessel was severely affected.

So we have clinical history, physical examination, and emerging biomarkers playing a large role for more than half a century.  However, the role of biomarkers broadened.  Patients were treated with antiplatelet agents, and a hypercoagulable state coexisted with myocardial ischemic injury.  This made the management of the patient reliant on long term followup for Warfarin with the international normalized ratio (INR) for a standardized prothrombin time (PT), and reversal of the PT required transfusion with thawed fresh frozen plasma (FFP).  The partial thromboplastin test (PPT) was necessary in hospitalization to monitor the heparin effect.

Thus, we have identified the use of traditional cardiac biomarkers for:

1. Diagnosis
2. Therapeutic monitoring

The story is only the beginning.  Many patients who were atypical in presentation, or had cardiovascular ischemia without plaque rupture were problematic.  This led to a concerted effort to redesign the troponin assays for high sensitivity with the concern that the circulation should normally be free of a leaked structural marker of myocardial damage. But of course, there can be a slow leak or a decreased rate of removal of such protein from the circulation, and the best example of this would be the patient with significant renal insufficiency, as TnT is clear only through the kidney, and TNI is clear both by the kidney and by vascular endothelium.  The introduction of the high sensitivity assay has been met with considerable confusion, and highlights the complexity of diagnosis in heart disease.  Another test that is used for the diagnosis of heart failure is in the class of natriuretic peptides (BNP, pro NT-BNP, and ANP), the last of which has been under development.

While there is an exponential increase in the improvement of cardiac devices and discovery of pharmaceutical targets, the laboratory support for clinical management is not mature.  There are miRNAs that may prove valuable, matrix metalloprotein(s), and potential endothelial and blood cell surface markers, they require

1. codevelopment with new medications
2. standardization across the IVD industry
3. proficiency testing applied to all laboratories that provide testing
4. the measurement  on multitest automated analyzers with high capability in proteomic measurement  (MS, time of flight, MS-MS)

nejmra1216063_f1   Atherosclerotic Plaques Associated with Various Presentations               nejmra1216063_f2     Inflammatory Pathways Predisposing Coronary Arteries to Rupture and Thrombosis.        atherosclerosis progression

Read Full Post »

G Protein–Coupled Receptor and S-Nitrosylation in Cardiac Ischemia

Curators: Larry H. Bernstein, MD, FCAP and Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN


This recently published article delineates a role of G-protein-coupled receptor with S-nitrosylation in outcomes for acute coronary syndrome.

Convergence of G Protein–Coupled Receptor and S-Nitrosylation Signaling Determines the Outcome to Cardiac Ischemic Injury

Z. Maggie Huang1, Erhe Gao1, Fabio Vasconcelos Fonseca2,3, Hiroki Hayashi2,3, Xiying Shang1, Nicholas E. Hoffman1, J. Kurt Chuprun1, Xufan Tian4, Doug G. Tilley1, Muniswamy Madesh1, David J. Lefer5, Jonathan S. Stamler2,3,6, and Walter J. Koch1*
1 Center for Translational Medicine, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA
2 Institute for Transformative Molecular Medicine, Case Western Reserve Univ SOM, Cleveland, OH
3 Department of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
4 Department of Biochemistry, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA
5 Department  Surgery, Div of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA
6 University Hospitals Harrington Discovery Institute, Cleveland, OH

Sci. Signal., 29 Oct 2013; 6(299), p. ra95         http:dx.doi.org/10.1126/scisignal.2004225


Heart failure caused by ischemic heart disease is a leading cause of death in the developed world. Treatment is currently centered on regimens involving

  • G protein–coupled receptors (GPCRs) or nitric oxide (NO).

These regimens are thought to target distinct molecular pathways. We showed that

  • these pathways are interdependent and converge on the effector GRK2 (GPCR kinase 2) to regulate myocyte survival and function.

Ischemic injury coupled to

  • GPCR activation, including GPCR desensitization and myocyte loss,
  • required GRK2 activation,

and we found that cardioprotection mediated by inhibition of GRK2 depended on

  • endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and
  • was associated with S-nitrosylation of GRK2.

Conversely, the cardioprotective effects of NO bioactivity were absent in a knock-in mouse with a form of GRK2 that cannot be S-nitrosylated. Because GRK2 and eNOS inhibit each other,

the balance of the activities of these enzymes in the myocardium determined the outcome to ischemic injury. Our findings suggest new insights into

  • the mechanism of action of classic drugs used to treat heart failure and
  • new therapeutic approaches to ischemic heart disease.

* Corresponding author. E-mail: walter.koch@temple.edu
Citation: Z. M. Huang, E. Gao, F. V. Fonseca, H. Hayashi, X. Shang, N. E. Hoffman, J. K. Chuprun, X. Tian, D. G. Tilley, M. Madesh, D. J. Lefer, J. S. Stamler, W. J. Koch, Convergence of G Protein–Coupled Receptor and S-Nitrosylation Signaling Determines the Outcome t

 Editor’s Summary

Sci. Signal., 29 Oct 2013; 6(299), p. ra95 [DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2004225]

NO More Heart Damage

Damage caused by the lack of oxygen and nutrients that occurs during myocardial ischemia can result in heart failure. A therapeutic strategy that helps to limit the effects of heart failure is to

  • increase signaling through G protein–coupled receptors (GPCRs)
  • by inhibiting GRK2 (GPCR kinase 2), a kinase that
    • desensitizes GPCRs.

Another therapeutic strategy provides S-nitrosothiols, such as nitric oxide, which can be

  • added to proteins in a posttranslational modification called S-nitrosylation.

Huang et al. found that the ability of S-nitrosothiols to enhance cardiomyocyte survival after ischemic injury required the S-nitrosylation of GRK2, a modification that inhibits this kinase. Mice bearing a form of GRK2 that could not be S-nitrosylated 

  • were more susceptible to cardiac damage after ischemia.

These results suggest that therapeutic strategies that promote the S-nitrosylation of GRK2 could be used to treat heart failure after myocardial ischemia.

Read Full Post »

Inhibition of the Cardiomyocyte-Specific Kinase TNNI3K

Author and Curator: Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP



This report from Science Translational Medicine is about the finding that a cardiomyocyte-specific kinase limits reperfusion injury in acute coronary syndrome, a phenomenon driven by oxidative stress, protecting cardiac cells from further damage.

Inhibition of the Cardiomyocyte-Specific Kinase TNNI3K Limits Oxidative Stress, Injury, and Adverse Remodeling in the Ischemic Heart

Ronald J. Vagnozzi1,2,  Gregory J. Gatto Jr.3, Lara S. Kallander3, Nicholas E. Hoffman2, Karthik Mallilankaraman2, Victoria L. T. Ballard3, Brian G. Lawhorn3, …, and Thomas Force2,6,*
+ Author Affiliations
1Program in Cell and Developmental Biology, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA
2Center for Translational Medicine, and 6Cardiology Division, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA
3Heart Failure Discovery Performance Unit, Metabolic Pathways and Cardiovascular Therapeutic Area Unit, GlaxoSmithKline, King of Prussia, PA
4Platform Technology and Sciences, GlaxoSmithKline, King of Prussia, PA
5Cardiovascular Division, Department of Internal Medicine, Hyogo College of Medicine, Nishinomiya 663-8131, Japan.

Sci Transl Med 16 Oct 2013; 
5(207), p. 207ra141     http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/scitranslmed.3006479
Percutaneous coronary intervention is first-line therapy for acute coronary syndromes (ACS) but can promote cardiomyocyte death and cardiac dysfunction via reperfusion injury, a phenomenon driven in large part by oxidative stress. Therapies to limit this progression have proven elusive, with no major classes of new agents since the development of anti-platelets/anti-thrombotics. We report that cardiac troponin I–interacting kinase (TNNI3K), a cardiomyocyte-specific kinase,
  1. promotes ischemia/reperfusion injury,
  2. oxidative stress,
  3. and myocyte death.
TNNI3K-mediated injury occurs
  • through increased mitochondrial superoxide production and
  • impaired mitochondrial function and is largely
  • dependent on p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) activation.

We developed a series of small-molecule TNNI3K inhibitors that

  1. reduce mitochondrial-derived superoxide generation,
  2. p38 activation, and
  3. infarct size
when delivered at reperfusion to mimic clinical intervention.
TNNI3K inhibition also preserves cardiac function and limits chronic adverse remodeling.
Our findings demonstrate that TNNI3K modulates reperfusion injury in the ischemic heart and is a tractable therapeutic target for ACS.  Pharmacologic TNNI3K inhibition would be cardiac-selective,
  • preventing potential adverse effects of systemic kinase inhibition.
Citation: R. J. Vagnozzi, G. J. Gatto, L. S. Kallander, N. E. Hoffman, K. Mallilankaraman, V. L. T. Ballard, B. G. Lawhorn, P. Stoy, J. Philp, A. P. Graves, Y. Naito, J. J. Lepore, E. Gao, M. Madesh, T. Force, Inhibition of the Cardiomyocyte-Specific Kinase TNNI3K Limits Oxidative Stress, Injury, and Adverse Remodeling in the Ischemic Heart. Sci. Transl. Med. 5, 207ra141 (2013).

Read Full Post »

Platelets in Translational Research – Part 2

Subtitle: Discovery of Potential Anti-platelet Targets

Reviewer and Curator: Larry H. Bernstein, MD, FCAP 


This presentation is the the second of a series on Platelets in Translational Medicine: Part I:  Platelet structure, interactions between platelets and endothelium, and intracellular transcription

Part II: Discovery of Potential Anti-platelet Targets

Endothelium-dependent vasodilator effects of platelet activating factor on rat resistance vessels

1Katsuo Kamata, Tatsuya Mori, *Koki Shigenobu & Yutaka Kasuya Department of Pharmacology, School of Pharmacy, Hoshi University, Tokyo and *Department of Pharmacology, Toho University School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Funabashi, Chiba, Jp Br. J. Pharmacol. (1989), 98, 1360-1364 To elucidate the mechanisms of the powerful and long-lasting hypotension produced by platelet activating factor (PAF), its effects on perfusion pressure in the perfused mesenteric arterial bed of the rat were examined. 2 Infusion of PAF (10-11 to 3 x 10-10M; EC50 = 4.0 x 10′ m; 95%CL = 1.6 x 10-11 — 9.4 x 10-11 M) and acetylcholine (ACh) (10′ to 10-6m; EC50 = 3.0 ± 0.1 x 10-9m) produced marked concentration-dependent vasodilatations which were significantly inhibited by treatment with detergents (0.1% Triton X-100 for 30 s or 0.3% CHAPS for 90 s). 3 Pretreatment with CV-6209, a PAF antagonist, inhibited PAF- but not ACh-induced vasodila­tation. 4 Treatment with indomethacin (10-6m) had no effect on PAF- or ACh-induced vasodilatation. 5


These results demonstrate that extremely low concentrations of PAF produce vasodilatation of resistance vessels through the release of endothelium-derived relaxing factor (EDRF). This may account for the strong hypotension produced by PAF in vivo. Platelet activating factor (PAF, acetyl glyceryl ether phosphorylcholine) has been shown to produce strong and long-lasting hypotension in various animal species, e.g. normotensive and spontaneously hypertensive rats, rabbits, guinea-pigs, and dogs (Tanaka et al., 1983). This action of PAF is thought to be endothelium-dependent (Kamitani et al., 1984; Kasuya et al., 1984a,b; Shigenobu et al., 1985; 1987). In a previous study (Shigenobu et al., 1987), we found that relatively low concentrations of PAF (10-9-10-7m) produced endothelium-dependent relaxation of the rat aorta in the presence of bovine serum albumin. This vasodilator action of PAF at low concentrations might be the cause of its hypo­tensive action in vivo. While the aorta will offer a resistance to flow, it is obvious that the contribution of vessels of smaller diameter to peripheral vascular resistance is much greater. In this regard, the mesen­teric circulation of the rat receives approximately one-fifth of the cardiac output (Nichols et al., 1985) and, thus, regulation of this bed may make a signifi­cant contribution towards systemic blood pressure and circulating blood volume.  Therefore, we examined the effect of PAF on the resistance vessels of the rat mesenteric vascular bed and found that extremely low concentrations (10 -11 to 3 x 10-16 m) can produce endothelium-dependent vasodilatation. Figure 1 Effects of PAF on the perfusion pressure of the methoxamine (10-3N)-constricted mesenteric vascu­lar bed. (a) Upper panel: relaxation induced by PAF (3 x 10-10 M). Lower panel: effects of the PAF-antagonist, CV-6209 (3 x 10-914), on the relaxation induced by PAF (3 x 10“N). (b) Concentration-response curve for the relaxation produced by PAF (10-11 to 3 x 10-10N) in the methoxamine (10-51)-constricted mesenteric vascular bed. Each point is the mean and vertical bars represent the s.e.mean from 5 experiments. Figure 2 Effects of detergents on acetylcholine (ACh)-induced relaxation of the methoxamine (10-5M)-con­stricted mesenteric vascular bed. Concentration-response curves are shown for ACh-induced vasodilatation before (0) and after treatment with 0.3% CHAPS (❑) or 0.1% Triton X-100 (0). Each point is the mean and vertical bars represent the s.e.mean from 5 experiments. Infusions of extremely low concentrations of PAF (10-11 to 3.1 x 10-1° m) produced a marked and long-lasting vasodilatation which was significantly suppressed by treatment with detergents ar bed. Concentration-response curves are shown for ACh-induced vasodilatation before (0) and after treatment with 0.3% CHAPS (❑) or 0.1% Triton X-100 (0). Each point is the mean and vertical bars represent the s.e.mean from 5 experiments. Since Furchgott & Zawadzki (1980) demonstrated the obligatory role of endothelium in vascular relax­ation by ACh, many studies have suggested that endothelium-derived relaxing factor (EDRF) is re­leased from endothelial cells in response to a large number of agonists (Furchgott, 1984). In the present study with perfused resistance vessels, ACh produced vasodilatation in a concentration-dependent manner and the vasorelaxant responses were significantly suppressed by perfusion with detergents such as CHAPS or Triton X-100.  These data strongly suggest the pos­sible involvement of the endothelium in the relax­ation induced by PAF. CV-6209, a PAF antagonist, inhibited PAF-induced but not ACh-induced vasodilatation in a concentration-dependent manner. Specific antago­nism by CV-6209 has already been obtained with respect to PAF-induced hypotension or platelet aggregation (Terashita et al., 1987). An accumulating body of evidence suggests that hypotension resulting from endotoxin challenge is due to the endogenous release of PAF from endothelial cells (Camussi et al., 1983), leukocytes (Demopoules et al., 1979), macro­phages (Mencia-Huerta & Benveniste, 1979; Camussi et al., 1983) and platelets (Chingard et al., 1979). Indeed, PAF antagonists can reverse estab­lished endotoxin-induced hypotension (Terashita et al., 1985; Handley et al., 1985a,b). From the above data and the results of the present study, one pos­sible explanation for endotoxin-induced hypotension may be that the release of PAF occurs, which then binds to its receptors located on the endothelial cells, stimulating production of EDRF. In conclusion, we demonstrated that extremely low concentrations of PAF produce long-lasting vasodilatation in a resistance vessel of the mesenteric vasculature. Moreover, we showed that this PAF-induced vasodilatation is mediated by a vasodilator substance released from endothelial cells (EDRF) which is not a prostaglandin. Since the PAF-induced endothelium-dependent relaxation observed in the present study was elicited at low concentrations and was long-lasting, it may be the main mechanism by which PAF induces hypotension in vivo.

Static platelet adhesion, flow cytometry and serum TXB2 levels for monitoring platelet inhibiting treatment with ASA and clopidogrel in coronary artery disease: a randomised cross-over study

Andreas C Eriksson*1, Lena Jonasson2, Tomas L Lindahl3, Bo Hedbäck2 and Per A Whiss1 1Divisions of Drug Research/Pharmacology and 2Cardiology, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköpin, Sw, and 3Department of Clinical Chemistry, University Hospital, Linköping, Sw Journal of Translational Medicine 2009, 7:42     http:/dx.doi.org/10.1186/1479-5876-7-42   http://www.translational-medicine.com/content/7/1/42


Background: Despite the use of anti-platelet agents such as acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) and clopidogrel in coronary heart disease, some patients continue to suffer from atherothrombosis. This has stimulated development of platelet function assays to monitor treatment effects. However, it is still not recommended to change treatment based on results from platelet function assays. This study aimed to evaluate the capacity of a static platelet adhesion assay to detect platelet inhibiting effects of ASA and clopidogrel. The adhesion assay measures several aspects of platelet adhesion simultaneously, which increases the probability of finding conditions sensitive for anti-platelet treatment.

Methods: With a randomised cross-over design we evaluated the anti-platelet effects of ASA combined with clopidogrel as well as monotherapy with either drug alone in 29 patients with a recent acute coronary syndrome. Also, 29 matched healthy controls were included to evaluate intra-individual variability over time. Platelet function was measured by flow cytometry, serum thromboxane B2 (TXB2)-levels and by static platelet adhesion to different protein surfaces. The results were subjected to Principal Component Analysis followed by ANOVA, t-tests and linear regression analysis.

Results: The majority of platelet adhesion measures were reproducible in controls over time denoting that the assay can monitor platelet activity. Adenosine 5′-diphosphate (ADP)-induced platelet adhesion decreased significantly upon treatment with clopidogrel compared to ASA. Flow cytometric measurements showed the same pattern (r2 = 0.49). In opposite, TXB2-levels decreased with ASA compared to clopidogrel. Serum TXB2 and ADP-induced platelet activation could both be regarded as direct measures of the pharmacodynamic effects of ASA and clopidogrel respectively. Indirect pharmacodynamic measures such as adhesion to albumin induced by various soluble activators as well as SFLLRN-induced activation measured by flow cytometry were lower for clopidogrel compared to ASA. Furthermore, adhesion to collagen was lower for ASA and clopidogrel combined compared with either drug alone. Conclusion: The indirect pharmacodynamic measures of the effects of ASA and clopidogrel might be used together with ADP-induced activation and serum TXB2 for evaluation of anti-platelet treatment. This should be further evaluated in future clinical studies where screening opportunities with the adhesion assay will be optimised towards increased sensitivity to anti-platelet treatment. The benefits of ASA have been clearly demonstrated by the Anti-platelet Trialists’ Collaboration. They found that ASA therapy reduces the risk by 25% of myocardial infarction, stroke or vascular death in “high-risk” patients. When using the same outcomes as the Anti-platelet Trialists’ Collaboration on a comparable set of “high-risk” patients, the CAPRIE-study showed a slight benefit of clopidogrel over ASA. Furthermore, the combination of clopidogrel and ASA has been shown to be more effective than ASA alone for preventing vascu­lar events in patients with unstable angina and myo­cardial infarction as well as in patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). Despite the obvious benefits from anti-platelet therapy in coro­nary disease, low response to clopidogrel has been described by several investigators. A lot of attention has also been drawn towards low response to ASA, often called “ASA resistance”. The concept of ASA resistance is complicated for several reasons. First of all, different stud­ies have defined ASA resistance in different ways. In its broadest sense, ASA resistance can be defined either as the inability of ASA to inhibit platelets in one or more platelet function tests (laboratory resistance) or as the inability of ASA to prevent recurrent thrombosis (i.e. treatment fail­ure, here denoted clinical resistance). The lack of a general definition of ASA resistance results in difficulties when trying to measure the prevalence of this phenome­non. Estimates of laboratory resistance range from approximately 5 to 60% depending on the assay used, the patients studied and the way of defining ASA resistance. Likewise, lack of a standardized definition of low response to clopidogrel makes it difficult to estimate the prevalence of this phenomenon as well. The principles of existing platelet assays, as well as their advantages and disadvantages, have been described elsewhere. In short, assays potentially useful for monitoring treatment effects include those commonly used in research such as platelet aggregometry and flow cytometry as well as immunoassays for measuring metabolites of thromboxane A2 (TXA2). Also, the PFA-100TM, MultiplateTM and the VerifyNowTM are examples of instruments commercially developed for evaluation of anti-platelet therapy. How­ever, no studies have investigated the usefulness of alter­ing treatment based on laboratory findings of ASA resistance. Regarding clopidogrel, there are recent studies showing that adjustment of clopidogrel loading doses according to vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein phosphorylation index measured utilising flow cytometry decrease major adverse cardiovascular events in patients with clopidogrel resistance. Static adhesion is an aspect of platelet function that has not been investigated in earlier studies of the effects of platelet inhibiting drugs. Consequently, static platelet adhesion is not measured by any of the current candidate assays for clinical evaluation of platelet function. The static platelet adhesion assay offers an opportunity for simultaneous measurements of the combined effects of several different platelet activators on platelet function. In this study, platelet adhesion to albumin, collagen and fibrinogen was investigated in the presence of soluble platelet activators including adenosine 5′-diphosphate (ADP), adrenaline, lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) and ris-tocetin. Collagen, fibrinogen, ADP and adrenaline are physiological agents that are well-known for their interac­tions with platelets. Ristocetin is a compound derived from bacteria that facilitates the interaction between von Willebrand factor (vWf) and glycoprotein (GP)-Ib-IX-V on platelets, which otherwise occurs only at flow condi­tions. The static nature of the assay therefore prompted us to include ristocetin in order to get a rough estimate on GPIb-IX-V dependent events. LPA is a phospholipid that is produced and released by activated platelets and that also can be generated through mild oxi­dation of LDL. It was included in the present study since it is present in atherosclerotic vessels and suggested to be important for platelet activation after plaque rup­ture. Finally, albumin was included as a surface since the platelet activating effect of LPA can be detected when measuring adhesion to such a surface. Thus, by the use of different platelet activators, several measures of platelet adhesion were obtained simultaneously This means that the possibilities to screen for conditions potentially important for detecting effects of platelet-inhibiting drugs far exceeds the screening abilities of other platelet function tests. Consequently, the static platelet adhesion assay is very well suited for development into a clinically useful device for monitoring platelet inhibiting treatment. Also, it has earlier been proposed that investi­gating the combined effects of two activators on platelet activity might be necessary in order to detect effects of ASA and other antiplatelet agents [26]. This is a criterion that can easily be met by the static platelet adhesion assay. Through the screening procedure we found different con­ditions where the static adhesion was influenced by the drug given.

The inclusion of patients and controls. Patients and controls were included consecutively. Blood samples from controls were drawn at two different occasions separated by 2–5.5 months. All patients entering the study received ASA combined with clopidogrel and blood sampling was performed 1.5–6.5 months after initiating the treatment. This was followed by a randomised cross-over enabling all patients to receive monotherapy with both ASA and clopidogrel. The patients received monotherapy for at least 3 weeks and for a maximum of 4.5 months before performing blood sampling. A total of 33 patients and 30 controls entered the study. In the end, 29 patients and 29 controls completed the study. Blood was drawn from patients at three different occa­sions (Figure 1). The first sample was drawn after all patients had received combined treatment with ASA (75 mg/day) and clopidogrel (75 mg/day) for 1.5–6.5 months after the index event. The study then used a randomised cross-over design meaning that half of the patients received ASA as monotherapy while half received only clopidogrel (75 mg/day for both monotherapies). The monotherapy was then switched for every patient so that all patients in total received all three therapies. Samples for evaluation of the monotherapies were drawn after therapy for at least 3 weeks and at the most for 4.5 months. Most of the differences in treatment length can be ascribed to the fact that the national recommendations for treatment in this patient group were changed during the course of the study. The allocation to monotherapy was blinded for the laboratory personnel. In general, the use of three different treatments for intra-individual com­parisons in a cross-over design is different from previous studies on ASA and clopidogrel, which have mainly been concerned with only two treatment alternatives.

Intra-individual variation in healthy controls

Measurements of platelet adhesion and serum TXB2-levels were performed on healthy controls on two separate occa­sions (2–5.5 months interval) in order to investigate the presence of intraindividual variation in platelet reactivity and clotting-induced TXB2-production. The standardised Z-scores from the simplified factors were used for analysis by Repeated Measures ANOVA of the data from the healthy controls. We found significantly decreased plate­let adhesion at the second compared to the first visit for ADP-induced adhesion (Factor 1, p = 0.012) and for adhe­sion to fibrinogen (Factor 5, p = 0.012). This intra-indi-vidual variability over time makes it difficult to draw any conclusions regarding effects of anti-platelet treatment. We therefore further analysed the individual variables constituting Factors 1 and 5 with Repeated Measures ANOVA in order to distinguish the variables that varied significantly over time. Variables being significantly dif­ferent between visit 1 and visit 2 were then excluded and a new Repeated Measures ANOVA was performed on the new factors. After this modification, none of the factors corresponding to adhesion showed variation over time and these factors were then used for analysis on patients. Serum levels of TXB2, which constituted a separate factor, varied significantly in healthy controls at two separate occasions (Figure 2). flow chart of patients and controls_Image_1 Effect of platelet inhibiting treatment on serum TXB2-levels (Factor 13). Serum TXB2-levels (Factor 13) for patients (n = 29) and healthy controls (n = 29) are presented as mean + SEM. ASA alone or in combination with clopidogrel was signif­icantly different from clopidogrel alone and compared to the mean of the controls (p < 0.001). Also, the difference between controls at visit 1 and visit 2 was significant. ***p < 0.001, ns = not significant. When investigating possible effects of platelet-inhibiting treatment with Repeated Measures ANOVA, significant effects were seen for four of the factors corresponding to platelet adhesion. The factors that were not able to detect significant treatment effects were adrenaline-induced adhesion (Factor 3), ristocetin-induced adhesion (Factor 4) and adhesion to fibrinogen (Factor 5). Regarding adhe­sion factors detecting treatment effects, ADP-induced adhesion (Factor 1, Figure 3A inset) was significantly decreased by clopidogrel alone or by clopidogrel plus ASA compared with ASA alone. Surprisingly, platelet adhesion induced by ADP was lower for the monotherapy with clopidogrel compared to dual therapy. ADP-induced adhesion to albumin is shown as a representative example of the variables of Factor 1 (Figure 3A). Ristocetin-induced adhesion to albumin (Factor 6, Figure 3B inset) was signif­icantly decreased by clopidogrel alone compared with ASA alone. This difference was also seen for ristocetin combined with LPA, which is shown as an example of a variable belonging to Factor 6 (Figure 3B). In Factor 7 (Figure 3C inset), corresponding to LPA-induced adhe­sion to albumin, we found clopidogrel to decrease adhe­sion compared with ASA and compared with ASA plus clopidogrel. These differences were reflected by the com­bined activation through LPA and adrenaline, which was a variable included in Factor 7 (Figure 3C). Finally, adhe­sion to collagen (Factor 8, Figure 3D) was significantly decreased by dual therapy compared with ASA alone or clopidogrel alone. As can be seen from the above descrip­tion, monotherapy with clopidogrel resulted in signifi­cantly decreased adhesion compared to clopidogrel combined with ASA for Factors 1 and 7. This was also observed for the variable shown as a representative exam­ple of Factor 6 (Figure 3B). The two factors corresponding to flow cytometric measurements (Factors 14 and 15, Fig­ure 4) both showed that ASA-treated platelets were more active than platelets treated with clopidogrel alone or clopidogrel plus ASA. Furthermore, serum TXB2-levels (Figure 2) was significantly decreased by ASA alone or by ASA plus clopidogrel compared with clopidogrel alone. Regarding the other measurements not directly measuring platelet function, significant differences were found for Factor 10 including HDL and for platelet count (Factor 12) but neither for the factor corresponding to inflamma­tion (Factor 9) nor for Factor 11 including LDL. Factor 10 including HDL was found to be elevated by both ASA and clopidogrel monotherapies compared with dual therapy (p = 0.003 for ASA, p = 0.019 for clopidogrel, data not shown). Platelet count were found to be increased after dual therapy compared with both monotherapies (p < 0.001, data not shown). flow chart of patients and controls_Image_2 The influence of ASA and clopidogrel on platelet adhesion. The main figures are representative examples of the varia­bles constituting the respective factors. The insets show the Z-scores for each factor. Also shown in the insets are the compar­isons between the control means of visit 1 and 2 and treatment with ASA (A), clopidogrel (C) and the combination of ASA and clopidogrel (A+C). The respective figures show the effect of platelet inhibiting treatment on ADP-induced adhesion (Factor 1, Fig A), ristocetin-induced adhesion to albumin (Factor 6, Fig B), LPA-induced adhesion to albumin (Factor 7, Fig C) and adhe­sion to collagen (Factor 8, Fig D) for patients (n = 29) and healthy controls (n = 29). All values are presented as mean + SEM. *p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001, ns = not significant. flow chart of patients and controls_Image_4 The influence of ASA and clopidogrel on platelet activity measured by flow cytometry. The effects of platelet inhibiting treatment on platelet activation detected by flow cytometry induced by ADP (Factor 14, Fig A) and SFLLRN (Factor 15, Fig B) on patients (n = 29). The main figures are representative examples of the variables constituting the respective fac­tors. The insets show the Z-scores for each factor. All values are presented as mean + SEM. ***p < 0.001, ns = not significant. Platelets from patients (n = 29) were activated in vitro with adenosine 5′-diphosphate (ADP; 0.1 and 0.6 μmol/L) or SFLLRN (5.3 μmol/L) followed by flow cytometric measurements of fibrinogen-binding or expression of P-selectin. Presented results are the mean-% of fibrinogen-binding and P-selectin expression ± SEM. Reference values (obtained earlier during routine analysis at the accredited Dept. of Clinical Chemistry at the University hospital in Linköping) are shown as mean with reference interval within parenthesis. Stars indicate significant differences for patients compared to reference values. *p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001, ns = not significant.  (Table not shown)


With the aim of finding variables sensitive to clopidogrel and ASA-treatment, this study used a screening approach and measured several different variables simultaneously. To reduce the complexity of the material we performed PCA in order to find correlating variables that measured the same property. In this way the 54 measurements of platelet adhesion were reduced to 8 factors. Visual inspec­tion revealed that each factor represented a separate entity of platelet adhesion and the factors could therefore be renamed according to the aspect they measured. We thus conclude that future studies must not involve all 54 adhe­sion variables, but instead, one variable from each factor should be enough to cover 8 different aspects of platelet adhesion. In addition to the adhesion data, the remaining 15 variables also formed distinct factors that were possible to rename according to measured property. It is notable that serum TXB2 formed a distinct group not correlated to any of the other measurements.

It is important that laboratory assays used for clinical pur­poses are reproducible and that they measure parameters that are not confounded by other variables. Some of the measurements performed in this study (clinical chemistry variables and platelet function measured by flow cytome-try) are used for clinical analysis at accredited laboratories at the University hospital in Linköping. However, the reproducibility of the platelet adhesion assay was mostly unknown before this study. Our initial results suggested that the factors corresponding to ADP-induced adhesion and adhesion to fibrinogen were not reproduci­ble. We therefore excluded the most varied variables con­stituting these factors, which resulted in no intra-individual effects for healthy controls in the platelet adhe­sion assay. From this we conclude that many, but not all, measures of platelet adhesion are reproducible. Moreover, the static condition might limit the possibilities for trans­lating the results from the adhesion assay into in vivo platelet adhesion occurring during flow conditions. How­ever, platelet adhesion to collagen and fibrinogen is dependent on α2131– and αIIb133-receptors respectively in the current assay. This suggests that the static platelet adhesion assay can measure important aspects of platelet function despite its simplicity. Furthermore, vWf depend­ent adhesion is not directly covered in the present assay although ristocetin-induced adhesion appears to be dependent on GPIb-IX-V and vWf . From this discussion it is evident that the adhesion assay as well as flow cytometry can measure effects of clopidog-rel when using ADP as activating stimuli. It is also evident that serum-TXB2 levels measure the effects of ASA. How­ever, these measures focus on the primary interaction between the drugs and the platelets, which could be prob­lematic when trying to evaluate the complex in vivo treat­ment effect. It has previously been found that only 12 of 682 ASA-treated patients (≈ 2%) had residual TXB2 serum levels higher than 2 standard deviations from the popula­tion mean. Measurements of the effect of arachidonic acid on platelet aggregometry have also led to the conclu­sion that ASA resistance is a very rare phenomenon. Thus, our study supports these previous findings that assays measuring the pharmacodynamic activity of ASA (to inhibit the COX-enzyme) seldom recognizes patients as ASA-resistant. This suggests that the cause of ASA-resistance is not due to an inability of ASA to act as a COX-inhibitor.

We suggest that direct measurements of ADP and TXA2-effects (in our case ADP-induced activation measured by adhesion or flow cytometry and serum TXB2-levels) must be combined with measures that are only partly dependent on ADP and TXA2 respectively. For instance, an adhesion variable partly dependent on TXA2 might be able to detect ASA resistance caused by increased signalling through other activating pathways. Such a scenario would be character­ized by serum TXB2 values showing normal COX-inhibi­tion while platelet adhesion is increased. This study employed a screening procedure in order to find such indirect measures of the effects of ASA and clopidogrel. Our results show inhibiting effects of clopidogrel com­pared to ASA on adhesion to albumin in the presence of LPA or ristocetin. This was also observed for our flow cytometric measurements with SFLLRN as activator, which confirms that SFLLRN is able to induce release of granule contents in platelets. SFLLRN- and ADP-induced platelet activation, as measured by flow cytometry, was moderately correlated to each other and adhesion induced by LPA as well as ristocetin showed weak correla­tions with ADP-induced adhesion. These results further confirm that these measures of platelet activity are partly dependent on ADP. We have earlier shown that adhesion to albumin induced by simultaneous stimulation by LPA and adrenaline (a variable belonging to the LPA-factor in the present study) can be inhibited by inhibition of ADP-signalling in vitro. This strengthens our conclusion that the effect on LPA-induced adhesion observed for clopidogrel is caused by inhibition of ADP-signalling. Also, the presence of LPA in atherosclerotic plaques and its possible role in thrombus formation after plaque rup­ture makes it especially interesting for the in vivo set­ting of myocardial infarction. Assays of static platelet adhesion that have been used in previous studies aimed at investigating treatment effects of platelet inhibiting drugs. Importantly, this study shows that the static platelet adhesion assay is reproducible over time. We also showed that the static platelet adhesion assay as well as flow cytometry detected the ability of clopidogrel to inhibit platelet activation induced by ADP. Our results further suggest that other measures of platelet adhesion and platelet activation measured by flow cytometry are indirectly dependent on secreted ADP or TXA2. One such measure is adhesion to a collagen surface, which should be more thoroughly investigated for its ability to detect effects of clopidogrel and ASA. Likewise, due to its connection to atherosclerosis and myocardial infarction, the LPA-induced effect should be further evaluated for its ability to detect effects of clopidogrel. In conclusion, the screening procedure undertaken in this study has revealed suggestions on which measures of platelet activity to com­bine in order to evaluate platelet function.

Effect of protein kinase C and phospholipase A2 inhibitors on the impaired ability of human platelets to cause vasodilation

*,1Helgi J. Oskarsson, 1Timothy G. Hofmeyer, 1Lawrence Coppey & 1Mark A. Yorek 1Department of Internal Medicine, University of Iowa and VA Medical Center, Iowa City, IA British Journal of Pharmacology (1999) 127, 903-908   http://www.stockton-press.co.uk/bjp

1   The aim of this study was to examine the mechanism of impaired platelet-mediated endothelium-dependent vasodilation in diabetes. Exposure of human platelets to high glucose in vivo or in vitro impairs their ability to cause endothelium-dependent vasodilation. While previous data suggest that the mechanism for this involves increased activity of the cyclo-oxygenase pathway, the signal transduction pathway mediating this effect is unknown. 2 Platelets from diabetic patients as well as normal platelets and normal platelets exposed to high glucose concentrations were used to determine the role of the polyol pathway, diacylglycerol (DAG) production, protein kinase C (PKC) activity and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activity on vasodilation in rabbit carotid arteries. 3 We found that two aldose-reductase inhibitors, tolrestat and sorbinil, caused only a modest improvement in the impairment of vasodilation by glucose exposed platelets. However, sorbitol and fructose could not be detected in the platelets, at either normal or hyperglycaemic conditions. We found that incubation in 17 mM glucose caused a significant increase in DAG levels in platelets. Furthermore, the DAG analog 1-oleoyl-2-acetyl-sn-glycerol (OAG) caused significant impairment of platelet-mediated vasodilation. The PKC inhibitors calphostin C and H7 as well as inhibitors of PLA2 activity normalized the ability of platelets from diabetic patients to cause vasodilation and prevented glucose-induced impairment of platelet-mediated vasodilation in vitro. 4 These results suggest that the impairment of platelet-mediated vasodilation caused by high glucose concentrations is mediated by increased DAG levels and stimulation of PKC and PLA2 activity. Keywords: Glucose; signal-transduction; platelet; vasodilation; diabetes Abbreviations: ADP, adenosine diphosphate; DAG, diacyglycerol; DEDA, dimethyleicosadienoic acid; EDNO, endothelium-derived nitric oxide; OAG, 1-oleoyl-2-acetyl-sn-glycerol; PKC, protein kinase C; PLA2, phospholipase A2; PMA, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate


Activated normal platelets produce vasodilation via release of platelet-derived adenosine diphosphate (ADP), which in turn stimulates the release of endothelium-derived nitric oxide (EDNO) . EDNO causes vascular smooth muscle relaxation and inhibits platelet aggregation and excessive thrombus formation. Recent reports suggest that platelets from patients with diabetes mellitus lack the ability to produce EDNO-dependent vasodilation. This platelet defect can be reproduced in vitro by exposure of normal human platelets to high glucose concentrations, in a time and concentration dependent manner. This glucose-induced platelet defect appears to involve activation of the cyclo-oxygenase pathway, including thromboxane synthase. However, it remains unknown how exposure of platelets to high concentrations of glucose in vivo or in vitro, leads to increased activity of these enzymes. Previous studies indicate that high glucose concentrations mediate some of their adverse biologic effects via the polyol pathway high glucose increases intracellular diacylglycer-ol (DAG) levels, upregulates protein kinase C (PKC) activity and can lead to increased arachidonic acid release via PKC-mediated increase in phospholipase A2 activity, which in turn increases activity of cyclo-oxygenase. In this study we explore the possible role of these metabolic pathways in mediating the inability of diabetic and hyperglycaemia-induced platelets to produce vasodilation. In this study we show that in vitro incubation of normal human platelets in high glucose causes a significant increase in platelet DAG levels, which is evident after 30 min.

The role of protein kinase-C (PKC)

DAG and OAG are known activators of PKC. Data in Figure 2 show that normal human platelets incubated with the DAG analogue, (OAG), in order to mimic the effect of increased intracellular DAG, lost their ability to cause vasodilation.  Next we tested whether enhanced PKC activity plays a role in the signalling pathway leading to impaired ability of diabetic platelets to cause vasodilation. We found that platelets from patients with diabetes mellitus that were treated with the PKC-inhibitor calphostin-C produced normal vasodilation, while untreated platelets from the same patients lacked the ability to cause vasorelaxation (Figure 3A). Similarly, while normal platelets incubated in high glucose lost their ability to cause vasorelaxation, co-incubation with calphostin-C prevented the glucose-mediated impairment of platelet-mediated vasodila-tion (Figure 3B). Calphostin-C did not affect the ability of normal platelets to mediate vasodilation: 35±3 vs 37±4% increase in vessel diameter, with or without the inhibitor (n=5), respectively. Similar results were obtained with the PKC-inhibitor H7 (50 ILM) (results not shown).  In addition, normal platelets  `primed’ by a 20 min incubation in Tyrode’s buffer containing PMA (80 nM) completely lost their ability to produce vasorelaxation (Figure 4). Figure 3 (A) Platelets were isolated from patients with diabetes mellitus (n=6). Platelets were incubated in Tyrode’s buffer for 2 h with or without calphostin-C (50 nM). Subsequently the platelets were thrombin (0.1 U ml1) activated and perfused through a phenylephrine (10 jIM) preconstricted normal rabbit carotid artery, and the change in vessel diameter measured. *P<0.01. (B) Platelets isolated from healthy donors (n=6) were incubated in Tyrode’s buffer containing either 6.6 mM (118 mg dl1) [NL Plts] or 17 mM (300 mg dl1) [Glucose Plts] glucose for 4 h. For the last 2 h the PKC-inhibitor calphostin-C (50 nM) was added to some of the high glucose treated platelets. Subsequently the three groups of platelets were thrombin (0.1 U ml1) activated and perfused through a phenylephrine (10 jIM) preconstricted normal rabbit carotid artery, and the change in vessel diameter measured. *P<0.01 vs NL-Plts and Gluc-Plts+Calp-C. (noy shown) Figure 4 Platelets from healthy donors (n=8) were isolated separated into two groups and treated with or without phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) (80 nM) for 20 min. After a washout period, treated and untreated platelets were thrombin (0.1 U ml1) activated and perfused through a phenylephrine (10 jIM) precon-stricted rabbit carotid artery, and the change in vessel diameter measured. *P<0.01 for PMA-Plts vs NL-Plts. (not shown)


In summary, the results of this study along with recently published data (Oskarsson & Hofmeyer 1997; Oskarsson et al., 1997) suggest that high glucose levels cause an increase in platelet DAG that upregulates the activity of PKC, which in turn increases the activity of phospholipase A2 that causes release of arachidonic acid which leads to increased activity of cyclo-oxygenase and thromboxane synthase in platelets (Oskarsson et al., 1997). From a clinical perspective this pathway is of considerable interest since it lends itself to therapeutic interventions with inhibitors both at the level of cyclo-oxygenase and the thromboxane-synthase.


OSKARSSON, H.J. & HOFMEYER, T.G. (1996). Platelet-mediated endothelium-dependent vasodilation is impaired by platelets from patients with diabetes mellitus. J. Am. Coll. Cardiol., 27, 1464 – 1470. OSKARSSON, H.J. & HOFMEYER, T.G. (1997). Diabetic human platelets release a substance which inhibits platelet-mediated vasodilation. Am. J. Phys., 273, H371 – H379. OSKARSSON, H.J., HOFMEYER, T.G. & KNAPP, H.R. (1997). Malondialdehyde inhibits platelet-mediated vasodilation by interfering with platelet-derived ADP. JACC, 29 (Suppl A): 304A.

G-Protein−Coupled Receptors as Signaling Targets for Antiplatele t Therapy

Susan S. Smyth, Donna S. Woulfe, Jeffrey I. Weitz, Christian Gachet, Pamela B. Conley, et al. Participants in the 2008 Platelet Colloquium Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2009;29:449-457.     http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/ATVBAHA.108.176388    Online ISSN: 1524-4636    http://atvb.ahajournals.org/content/29/4/449


Platelet G protein–coupled receptors (GPCRs) initiate and reinforce platelet activation and thrombus formation. The clinical utility of antagonists of the P2Y12 receptor for ADP suggests that other GPCRs and their intracellular signaling pathways may represent viable targets for novel antiplatelet agents. For example, thrombin stimulation of platelets is mediated by 2 protease-activated receptors (PARs), PAR-1 and PAR-4. Signaling downstream of PAR-1 or PAR-4 activates phospholipase C and protein kinase C and causes autoamplification by production of thromboxane A2, release of ADP, and generation of more thrombin. In addition to ADP receptors, thrombin and thromboxane A2 receptors and their downstream effectors—including phosphoinositol-3 kinase, Rap1b, talin, and kindlin—are promising targets for new antiplatelet agents. The mechanistic rationale and available clinical data for drugs targeting disruption of these signaling pathways are discussed. The identification and development of new agents directed against specific platelet signaling pathways may offer an advantage in preventing thrombotic events while minimizing bleeding risk. (Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2009;29:449-457.) Key Words: platelets . signaling . G proteins . receptors . thrombosis


Since the first observations of agonist-induced platelet aggregation in 1962, remarkable progress has been made in identifying cell surface receptors and intracellular signaling pathways that regulate platelet function. These discoveries have translated into estab­lished, new, and emerging therapeutics to treat and prevent acute ischemic events by targeting platelet signal transduction.  Indeed, antiplatelet therapy is a mainstay of initial management of patients with ACS and those undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). Evidence-based refinements in anticoagulant and antiplatelet therapies have played an important role in the progressive decline in the death rate from coronary disease observed from 1994 to 2004. Despite these therapeutic advances, however, ACS patients receiving “optimal” antithrombotic therapy still suf­fer cardiovascular events. Platelet Signaling Pathways

Vascular injury—whether caused by spontaneous rupture of atherosclerotic plaque, plaque erosion, or PCI-related or other trauma—exposes adhesive proteins, tissue factor, and lipids promoting platelet tethering, adhesion, and activation. Once bound and activated, platelets release soluble mediators such as ADP, thromboxane A2, and serotonin and facilitate throm­bin generation. These mediators, in turn, stimulate GPCRs on the platelet surface that are critical to initiation of various intracellular signaling pathways, including activa­tion of phospholipase C (PLC), protein kinase C (PKC), and phosphoinositide (PI)-3 kinase. Both calcium and PKC con­tribute to activation of the small G protein,  Recently, members of the kindlin family of focal adhesion proteins have been identified as integrin activators, perhaps functioning to facilitate talin–integrin interactions. Platelet signaling pathways Figure. Role of G protein–coupled receptors in the thrombotic process. In humans, protease-activated receptors (PAR)-1 and PAR-4 are coupled to intracellular signaling pathways through molecular switches from the Gq, G12, and Gi protein families. When thrombin (scissors) cleaves the amino-terminal of PAR-l and PAR-4, several signaling pathways are activated, one result of which is ADP secretion. By binding to its receptor, P2Y12, ADP activates additional Gi-mediated pathways. In the absence of wounding, platelet activation is counteracted by signaling from PG I2 (PGI2). Adapted from references 26–28 with permission. Ca2 indicates calcium; CalDAG-GEF1, calcium and diacylglcerol-regulated guanine-nucleotide exchange factor 1; GP, glycoprotein; IP, prostacyclin; PKC, pro­tein kinase C; PLC, phospholipase C; RIAM, Rap1-GTP–interacting adapter molecule.

Future Directions: P2Y1 and P2X Inhibition

Given the clinical success of the P2Y12 antagonists, it is worthwhile to investigate other purinergic signaling pathways in platelets. Although platelets have 2 P2Y receptors acting synergistically through different signaling pathways, the overall platelet response to ADP is relatively modest. For example, ADP alone elicits only reversible responses and does not promote platelet secretion. The low number of ADP receptors on the platelet surface also may limit signal­ing.

Thrombin Signaling in Platelets

Thrombin, the most potent platelet agonist, has diverse effects on various vascular cells. For example, thrombin promotes chemotaxis, adhesion, and inflammation through its effects on neutrophils and monocytes. Thrombin also influ­ences vascular permeability through its effects on endothelial cells and triggers smooth muscle vasoconstriction and mitogenesis.54 Thrombin interacts with 2 protease-activated receptors (PARs) on the surface of human platelets—PAR-1 and PAR-4. Signaling through the PARs is triggered by thrombin-mediated cleavage of the extracellular domain of the receptor and exposure of a “tethered ligand” at the new end of the receptor (Figure 1). Signaling through either PAR can activate PLC and PKC and cause autoamplification through the production of thromboxane A2, the release of ADP, and generation of more thrombin on the platelet surface.

PAR-1 Antagonists as Antithrombotic Therapy

The expression profiles of PARs on platelets differ between humans and nonprimates. Mouse platelets lack PAR-1 and largely signal through PAR-4 in response to thrombin, with PAR-3 serving a cofactor function. Platelets from cynomol-gus monkeys contain primarily PAR-1 and PAR-4, and a peptide-mimetic PAR-1 antagonist extends the time to throm­bosis after carotid artery injury. The nonpeptide antagonist SCH 530348 (described below) inhibits thrombin- and PAR-1 agonist peptide (TRAP)-induced platelet aggregation (inhibitory concentrations of 47 nmol/L and 25 nmol/L, respectively), but it has no effect on ADP, collagen, U46619, or PAR-4 agonist peptide stimulation of platelets. SCH 530348 has excellent bioavailability in rodents and monkeys (82%; 1 mg/kg) and completely inhibits ex vivo platelet aggregation in response to TRAP within 1 hour of oral administration in monkeys with no effect on prothrombin or activated partial thromboplastin times. Of the PAR-1 antagonists, SCH 530348 and E5555 are the compounds farthest along in development and clinical testing. SCH 530348 is an oral reversible PAR-1 antagonist de­rived from himbacine, a compound found in the bark of the Australian magnolia tree. In clinical trials, 68% of patients showed ~80% inhibition of platelet aggregation in response to thrombin receptor activating peptide (TRAP; 15 mol/L) 60 minutes after receiving a 40-mg loading dose of SCH 530348. By 120 minutes, the proportion had risen to 96%. In a Phase 2 trial of SCH 530348, 1031 patients scheduled for angiography and possible stenting were randomized to re­ceive SCH 530348 or placebo plus aspirin, clopidogrel, and antithrombin therapy (heparin or bivalirudin). Major and minor bleeding did not differ substantially between the placebo and individual or combined SCH 530348 groups.

Future Directions: PAR-4 Inhibition

Activation and signaling of PAR-1 and PAR-4 provoke a biphasic “spike and prolonged” response, with PAR-1 acti­vated at thrombin concentrations 50% lower than those required to activate PAR-4. A 4-amino acid segment, YEPF, on the extracellular domain of PAR-1 appears to account for the receptor’s high-affinity interactions with thrombin. The YEPF sequence has homology to the COOH-terminal of hirudin and its synthetic GEPF analog, bivaliru-din, which can interact with exosite-1 on thrombin. Thus, thrombin may interact in tandem with PAR-1 and PAR-4, with the initial interactions involving exosite-1 and PAR-1, and subsequent docking at PAR-4 via the thrombin active site.56 PAR-1 and PAR-4 may form a stable heterodimer that enables thrombin to act as a bivalent functional agonist, rendering the PAR-1–PAR-4 heterodimer complex a unique target for novel antithrombotic therapies. Pepducins, or cell-permeable peptides derived from the third intracellular loop of either PAR-1 or PAR-4, disrupt signaling between the receptors and G proteins and inhibit thrombin-induced platelet aggregation. In mice, a PAR-4 pepducin has been shown to prolong bleeding times and attenuate platelet activation. Combining bivalirudin with a PAR-4 pepducin (P4pal-i1) inhibited aggregation of human platelets from 15 healthy volunteers, even in response to high concentrations of thrombin. In addition, although bivaliru-din and P4pal-i1 each delayed the time to carotid artery occlusion after ferric chloride-induced injury in guinea pigs, their combination prolonged the time to occlusion more than did bivalirudin alone. Additional blockade of the PAR-4 receptor may confer a benefit beyond that achieved by inhibition of thrombin activity.

Targeting Thromboxane Signaling

Thromboxane A2 acts on the thromboxane A2/prostaglandin (PG) H2 (TP) receptor, causing PLC signaling and platelet activation. Several drugs have been tested and developed that prevent thromboxane synthesis—most notably, aspirin. Be­yond the documented success of aspirin, however, results have been uniformly disappointing with a wide variety of thromboxane synthase inhibitors.  Likewise, a multitude of TP receptor antagonists have been developed, but few have progressed beyond Phase 2 trials because of safety concerns. More recently, the thromboxane A2 receptor antagonist terutroban (S18886) showed rapid, potent inhibition of platelet aggregation in a porcine model of in-stent thrombosis that was comparable to the combination of aspirin and clopidogrel but with a more favorable bleeding profile. Ramatroban, another TP inhibitor approved in Japan for treatment of allergic rhinitis, has shown antiaggre-gatory effects in vitro comparable to those of aspirin and cilostazol.

Novel Downstream Signaling Targets

Signaling pathways stimulated by GPCR activation are es­sential for thrombus formation and may represent potential targets for drug development. One pathway involved in platelet activation is signaling through lipid kinases. PI-3 kinases transduce signals by generating lipid second­ary messengers, which then recruit signaling proteins to the plasma membrane. A principal target for PI-3K signaling is the protein kinase Akt (Figure 1). Platelets contain both the Akt1 and Akt2 isoforms.28 In mice, both Akt1 and Akt2 are required for thrombus formation. Mice lacking Akt2 have aggregation defects in response to low concentrations of thrombin or thromboxane A2 and corresponding defects in dense and a-granule secretion. The Akt isoforms have multiple substrates in platelets. Glycogen synthase kinase (GSK)-3(3 is phosphorylated by Akt in platelets and sup­presses platelet function and thrombosis in mice. Akt-mediated phosphorylation of GSK-3(3 inhibits the kinase activity of the enzyme, and with it, its suppression of platelet function. Akt activation also stimulates nitric oxide produc­tion in platelets, which results in protein kinase G–dependent degranulation. Finally, Akt has been implicated in activa­tion of cAMP-dependent phosphodiesterase (PDE3A), which plays a role in reducing platelet cAMP levels after thrombin stimulation.67 Each of these Akt-mediated events is expected to contribute to platelet activation. Rap1 members of the Ras family of small G proteins have been implicated in GPCR signaling and integrin activation. Rap1b, the most abundant Ras GTPase in platelets, is activated rapidly after GPCR stimulation and plays a key role in the activation of integrin aIIb(3) Stimulation of Gq-linked receptors, such as PAR-4 or PAR-1, activates PLC and, with consequent increases in intracellular calcium, PKC. These signals in turn activate calcium and diacylglcerol-regulated guanine-nucleotide exchange factor 1 (CalDAG-GEF1), which has been implicated in activation of Rap1 in plate-lets. Experiments in CalDAG-GEF1-deficient platelets indicate that PKC- and CalDAG-GEF1–dependent events represent independent synergistic pathways leading to Rap1-mediated integrin aIIb(33 activation. Consistent with this concept, ADP can stimulate Rap1b activation in a P2Y12– and PI-3K-dependent, but calcium-independent, manner. A final common step in integrin activation involves bind­ing of the cytoskeletal protein talin to the integrin-(33-subunit cytoplasmic tail. Rap1 appears to be required to form an activation complex with talin and the Rap effector RIAM, which redistributes to the plasma membrane and unmasks the talin binding site, resulting in integrin activation. Mice that lack Rap1b or platelet talin have a bleeding disorder with impaired platelet aggregation because of the lack of integrin aIIb( (3activation. In contrast, mice with a integrin-(33 subunit mutation that prevents talin binding have impaired agonist-induced platelet aggregation and are protected from throm­bosis, but do not display pathological bleeding, suggest­ing that this interaction may be an attractive therapeutic target. Recently, members of the kindlin family of focal adhesion proteins, kindlin-2 and kindlin-3, have been identi­fied as coactivators of integrins, required for talin activation of integrins. Kindlin-2 binds and synergistically en­hances talin activation of aIIb. Of note, deficiency in kindlin-3, the predominant kindlin family member found in hematopoietic cells, results in severe bleeding and protection from thrombosis in mice.


Antiplatelet therapy targeting thromboxane production, ADP effects, and fibrinogen binding to integrin aIIb(33 have proven benefit in preventing or treating acute arterial thrombosis. New agents that provide greater inhibition of ADP signaling and agents that impede thrombin’s actions on platelets are currently in clinical trials. Emerging strategies to inhibit platelet function include blocking alternative platelet GPCRs and their intracellular signaling pathways. The challenge remains to determine how to best combine the various current and pending antiplatelet therapies to maximize benefit and minimize harm. It is well documented that aspirin therapy increases bleeding compared with pla­cebo; that when clopidogrel is added to aspirin therapy, bleeding increases relative to the use of aspirin therapy alone; and that when even greater P2Y12 inhibition with prasugrel is added to aspirin therapy, bleeding is further increased com­pared with the use of clopidogrel and aspirin combination therapy. Does this mean that improved antiplatelet efficacy is mandated to come at the price of increased bleeding? Not necessarily, but it will require a far better understanding of platelet signaling pathways and what aspects of platelet function must be blocked to minimize arterial thrombosis. One of the best clinical examples of the disconnect between antiplatelet-related bleeding and antithrombotic ef­ficacy is the case of the oral platelet glycoprotein (GP) IIb/IIIa antagonists. The use of these agents uniformly led to significantly greater bleeding compared with aspirin but no greater efficacy; in fact, mortality was increased among patients receiving the oral glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitors.77 Through an improved understanding of platelet signaling pathways, antiplatelet therapies likely can be developed not based on their ability to inhibit platelets from aggregating, as current therapies are, but rather based on their ability to prevent the clinically meaningful consequences of platelet activation. What exactly these are remains the greatest obstacle.

Related articles in Pharmaceutical Intelligence

(no name assigned is Larry H Bernstein, MD)

Platelets in Translational Research – 1 https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/10-6-2013/larryhbern/Platelets_in_Translational_Research-1

Platelets in Translational Research – 2 http://phramaceuticalintelligence.com/2013-10-7/larryhbern/Platelets-in-Translational-Research-2/

αllbβ3 Antagonists As An Example of Translational Medicine Therapeutics   http://phrmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013-10-12/larryhbern_BS-Coller/αllbβ3_Antagonists_As_An_Example_of_Translational_Medicine_Therapeutics

Do Novel Anticoagulants Affect the PT/INR? The Cases of XARELTO (rivaroxaban) and PRADAXA (dabigatran)    Vivek Lal, MBBS, MD, FCIR, Justin D Pearlman, MD, PhD, FACC and Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN

Intravenous drug for the treatment of Acute Heart Failure (AHF) by Trevena, Inc. (Trevena) – Leader in the Discovery of G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) biased ligands   Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN

Nitric Oxide, Platelets, Endothelium and Hemostasis https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/11/08/nitric-oxide-platelets-endothelium-and-hemostasis/

Nitric Oxide Function in Coagulation https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/11/26/nitric-oxide-function-in-coagulation/

Advanced Topics in Sepsis and the Cardiovascular System at its End Stage https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013/08/18/advanced-topics-in-Sepsis-and-the-Cardiovascular-System-at-its-End-Stage/

The Effects of Aprotinin on Endothelial Cell Coagulant Biology Demet Sag, PhD https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013/07/20/the-effects-of-aprotinin-on-coagulant-biology/

Biomaterials Technology: Models of Tissue Engineering for Reperfusion and Implantable Devices for Revascularization https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/5_04_2013/bernstein_lev-ari/Bioengineering_of_Vascular_and_Tissue_Models

Vascular Repair: Stents and Biologically Active Implants https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/05-03-2013/Bernstein.Lev-Ari/Stents,_biologically_active_implants_and_vascular_repair/

Prostacyclin and Nitric Oxide: Adventures in Vascular Biology – A Tale of Two Mediators Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN  https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013/04/30/prostacyclin-and-nitric-oxide-adventures-in-vascular-biology-a-tale-of-two-mediators/

Drug Eluting Stents: On MIT’s Edelman Lab’s Contributions to Vascular Biology and its Pioneering Research on DES Larry Bernstein, MD and Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN http://PharmaceuticalIntelligence.com/2013/04/25/Contributions-to-vascular-biology/

Accurate Identification and Treatment of Emergent Cardiac Events https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013/03/15/accurate-identification -and-tratment-of-emergent-cardiac-events/

The Heart: Vasculature Protection – A Concept-based Pharmacological Therapy including THYMOSIN Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013/02/28/the-heart-vascculature-a-concept-based-pharmaceutical-therapy-including-thymosin/

Arteriogenesis and Cardiac Repair: Two Biomaterials – Injectable Thymosin beta4 and Myocardial Matrix Hydrogel Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013/02/27/arteriogenesis-and-cardiac-repair-two-biomaterials-injectable-thymosin-beta5-and-myocardial-matrix-hydrogel/

PCI Outcomes, Increased Ischemic Risk associated with Elevated Plasma Fibrinogen not Platelet Reactivity Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2013/01/10/pci-outcomes-increased-ischemic-risk-associated-with-elevated-plasma-fibrinogen-not-platelet-reactivity/

PLATO Trial on ACS: BRILINTA (ticagrelor) better than Plavix® (clopidogrel bisulfate): Lowering chances of having another heart attack Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/12/28/PLATO-trial-on-ACS:-Brilinta-(tigrelor)-better-than–Plavix-(clopidogrel-bisulfate)-lowering-chances-of-having-another-heart-attack/

Biochemistry of the Coagulation Cascade and Platelet Aggregation – Part I https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/11/26/biochemistry-of-the-coagulation-cascade-and-platelet-aggregation/

Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR-gamma) Receptors Activation: PPARγ transrepression  for Angiogenesis in Cardiovascular Disease and PPARγ transactivation for Treatment of Diabetes Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/11/13/peroxisome-proliferator-activated-receptor-ppar-gamma-receptors-activation-pparγ-transrepression-for-angiogenesis-in-cardiovascular-disease-and-pparγ-transactivation-for-treatment-of-diabetes/

Coagulation: Transition from a familiar model tied to laboratory testing, and the new cellular-driven model https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/11/10/coagulation-transition-from-a-familiar-model-tied-to-laboratory-testing-and-the-new-cellular-driven-model/

Nitric Oxide and Sepsis, Hemodynamic Collapse, and the Search for Therapeutic Options https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/10/20/nitric-oxide-and-sepsis-hemodynamic-collapse-and-the-search-for-therapeutic-options/

Sepsis, Multi-organ Dysfunction Syndrome, and Septic Shock: A Conundrum of Signaling Pathways Cascading Out of Control https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/10/13/sepsis-multi-organ-dysfunction-syndrome-and-septic-shock-a-conundrum-of-signaling-pathways-cascading-out-of-control/

Endothelin Receptors in Cardiovascular Diseases: The Role of eNOS Stimulation Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/10/04/endothelin-receptors-in-cardiovascular-diseases-the-role-of-enos-stimulation/

Nitric Oxide Covalent Modifications: A Putative Therapeutic Target? SJ Williams, PhD https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/09/24/nitric-oxide-covalent-modifications-a-putative-therapeutic-target/

Interaction of Nitric Oxide and Prostacyclin in Vascular Endothelium https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/09/14/interaction-of-nitric-oxide-and-prostacyclin-in-vascular-endothelium/

Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) and the Role of Agent Alternatives in endothelial Nitric Oxide Synthase (eNOS) Activation and Nitric Oxide Production Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/07/19/cardiovascular-disease-cvd-and-the-role-of-agent-alternatives-in-endothelial-nitric-oxide-synthase-enos-activation-and-nitric-oxide-production/                     ‎

Read Full Post »

The Implications of a Newly Discovered  CYP2J2 Gene Polymorphism  Associated with Coronary Vascular Disease in the Uygur Chinese Population

Author, Curator: Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP

This is an interesting genomic study of the relationship of genetic polymorphism in the Chinese Uygur population that highlights the difficulty in CVD genomics, and casts a promising light on difficulties over
1.  possibly no more than 8 genetic signatures to account for all of human CVD conditions
2.  genetic signatures may no be equally distributed over studied populations
3.  genetic signatures may be more pronounced in different populations
4.  there is little predictable validity in such studies over large assimilated populations (such as African-Americans
5.  the best genomic evidence for meaningful associations does appear to tie in with endothelial metabolism
6.  the greatest difficulty in all studies is the small dose of information provided by an such linkage
7.  there has been too little information provided in studies of the effect of dietary factors on the affected population, which would entail nutrigenomics.
8.  there is an association between certain distinct CVD’s and later development of coronary heart disease (CHD).
This study concepts, methods and difficulties were recently reviewed in the following articles:
Synthetic Biology: On Advanced Genome Interpretation for Gene Variants and Pathways: What is the Genetic Base of Atherosclerosis and Loss of Arterial Elasticity with Aging
Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN
Genomics & Genetics of Cardiovascular Disease Diagnoses: A Literature Survey of AHA’s Circulation Cardiovascular Genetics, 3/2010 – 3/2013
Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN and Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP
Diagnosis of Cardiovascular Disease, Treatment and Prevention: Current & Predicted Cost of Care and the Promise of Individualized Medicine Using Clinical Decision Support Systems
Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN and Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP
Hypertension and Vascular Compliance: 2013 Thought Frontier – An Arterial Elasticity Focus
Justin D. Pearlman, MD, PhD, and Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN
Clinical Trials Results for Endothelin System: Pathophysiological role in Chronic Heart Failure, Acute Coronary Syndromes and MI – Marker of Disease Severity or Genetic Determination?
Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN
Vascular Medicine and Biology: CLASSIFICATION OF FAST ACTING THERAPY FOR PATIENTS AT HIGH RISK FOR MACROVASCULAR EVENTS Macrovascular Disease – Therapeutic Potential of cEPCs
Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN
Endothelial Function and Cardiovascular Disease
Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP
Reversal of Cardiac Mitochondrial Dysfunction
Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP
A Second Look at the Transthyretin Nutrition Inflammatory Conundrum
Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP

A Novel Polymorphism of the CYP2J2 Gene is Associated with Coronary Artery Disease in Uygur Population in China

Qing Zhu, Zhenyan Fu, Yitong Ma, Hong Yang, Ding Huang, Xiang Xie, Fen Liu, Yingying Zheng, Erdenbat Cha
PII: S0009-9120(13)00174-4    Available online 15 May 2013
Reference: CLB 8375
To appear in: Clinical Biochemistry
Received date: 17 February 2013
Revised date: 13 April 2013
Accepted date: 3 May 2013
Background: Cytochrome P450 (CYP) 2J2 is expressed in the vascular endothelium and metabolizes arachidonic acid to biologically active epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs).
  • The EETs are potent endogenous vasodilators and
  • inhibitors of vascular inflammation.
The aim of the present study was to assess the association between the human CYP2J2 gene polymorphism and coronary artery disease (CAD) in a Han and Uygur population of China.
We use two independent case-control studies:
  1. a Han population (206 CAD patients and 262 control subjects) and
  2. a Uygur population (336 CAD patients and 448 control subjects).
All CAD patients  and controls were genotyped for the same three single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)
  1. rs890293
  2. rs11572223
  3. rs2280275
of CYP2J2 gene by a Real-time PCR instrument.
Results: In the Uygur population, for total, the distribution of SNP3 (rs2280275) genotypes showed a significant difference between CAD and control participants (P=0.048).
For total and men, the distribution of SNP3 (rs2280275) alleles and the dominant model (CC vs CT + TT)
  • showed a significant difference between CAD and control participants (for allele: P=0.014 and P=0.035, respectively; for dominant model: P=0.014 and P=0.034, respectively).
The significant difference in dominant model was retained after adjustment for covariates (OR: 0.279, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.176-0.440, P=0.001; OR: 0.240, 95% CI: 0.128-0.457, P=0.001, respectively).
Conclusions: The CC genotype of rs2280275 in CYP2J2 gene could be a protective genetic marker of CAD and T allele may be a risk genetic marker of CAD in men of Uygur population in China.
1. We used two independent case-control studies: one was in a Han population and the other was in a Uygur population.
2. The CC genotype of rs2280275 in CYP2J2 gene could be a protective genetic marker of CAD and T allele may be a risk genetic marker of CAD in men of Uygur population in China.
3. Polymorphism of the CYP2J2 gene can affect the synthesis of epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs).
Reviewer Observations:
This article describes the association between CYP2J2 polymorphism(SNP1, SNP2 and SNP3) and coronary artery disease (CAD) in two populations of China (Han and Uygur).
Results show that
  1. the frequency of T allele of rs2280275 (SNP3 of the CYP2J2) is higher in CAD patients than in control subjects and
  2. that CC genotype of rs 2280275 is significantly lower in CAD patients than in control subjects.
  3. “T allele of rs2280275 was significantly higher in CAD patients than in control participants. CC genotype of rs2280275 was significantly lower in CAD patients than in control participants.”;
  4. It appears that CC is the homozygous and dominant state of this SNP3 sequence in a pairing-combination.
  5. The effect of decreased CHD is seen only in the CC double combination, in men and not women. The difference between men and women with CAD is in LDL.
For Uygur population,
(1) after adjusting major confounding factors such as Glu、LDL、EH、DM and smoking, the effect of decreased CAD is seen only in the CC double combination, in men and not women.
(2) for men, the LDL level is higher in CAD than in control, for women, there isn’t a difference of LDL level between CAD and control.
(3) for men, the distribution of T and C allele is different between CAD and control (p=0.035), and not in women (p=0.118).
The T allele of SNP3 is increased in CAD. So the C allele is important, and a CT pair is neutral. Neither SNP1 or SNP2, or presumably both have lower incidence.

I might conjecture that having(heterozygous rs2280275), a C & a T, and eating a lot of fish and/or flax seed would show a difference

  • because of the intimal enzymatic conversion of arachidonic acid to EETs.

Arachidonic acid is a derivative of linoleic acid,an n-6 PUFA, while linolenic acid is an omega-3 PUFA. Substantial documentation of the effect of EETs is given. The anti-inflammatory advantage of an n-3 PUFA is also known.
It appears that the intimal conversion results in an omega-3 product.  In addition, the EET activates eNOS, so that there is endothelial NO produced.

The studies of both Spiecker and Ping Yin Liu showed the polymorphism of CYP2J2 (rs890293, SNP1) has relation with CAD. However, in this study, the authors found there was no association between the polymorphism of CYP2J2 (rs890293, SNP1) and CAD in Han population and Uygur population. We found (rs 2280275, SNP3) has association with CAD.
  • “The CC genotype of rs2280275 in CYP2J2 gene could be a protective genetic marker of CAD and T allele may be a risk genetic marker of CAD in men of Uygur population in China”
All participants had a differential diagnosis for chest pain encountered in the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory of First Affiliated Hospital of Xinjiang Medical University. We recruited randomly CAD group and control group, subjects with valvular disease were excluded, control subjects were not healthy individuals, some of them have hypertension, some of them have DM, some of them have hyperlipidemia, which means control group expose to the same risk factors of CAD while the results of coronary angiogram is normal. All control subjects underwent a coronary angiogram and have no coronary artery stenosis.
The analysis was a logistic regression analysis, we used the major variables of CAD to analysis and found the CC genotype was the dependent useful factor after adjusting for major confounding factors such as Glu、LDL、EH、DM and smoking.
Schematic of EET interactions with cardiovascularion channels.
A: In the cardiac myocyte, EETs activate sarcolemmal or mitochondrial KATP channels.
B: In the vasculature, EETs activate endothelial small-(SKCa) or intermediate (IKCa)–conductance calcium-activated channels to cause hyperpolarization, which can be transmitted to the vascular smooth muscle via myoendothelial gap junctions. EETs also activate TRPV4 channels to activate Ca2+influx. In the vascular smooth muscle, EETs activate large conductance, calcium-activated (BK-Ca) channels through a G protein-Coupled event.
C: In platelets, EETs activate BK-Ca channels.calcium-activated (BK-Ca) channels through a G-protein-coupled event. C, In platelets, EETs activate BK-Ca channels.

Association of the ADRA2A polymorphisms with the risk of type 2 diabetes: A meta-analysis

Xi Chen, Lei Liu, Wentao He, Yu Lu, Delin Ma, Tingting Du, Qian Liu, Cai Chen, Xuefeng Yu
Clinical Biochemistry 2013;  46 (9): 722–726   http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.clinbiochem.2013.02.004
Results from the published studies on the association of ADRA2A (adrenoceptor alpha 2A) variants with type 2 diabetes (T2D) are conflicting and call for further assessment. The aim of this meta-analysis was to quantitatively summarize the effects of the two recently reported ADRA2A single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) rs553668 and rs10885122 on T2D risk.
Twelve studies with 40,828 subjects from seven eligible papers were included in the meta-analysis. Overall, the present meta-analysis failed to support a positive association between ADRA2A SNPs (rs553668 and rs10885122) and susceptibility to T2D (OR = 1.05, p = 0.17, 95% CI: 0.98, 1.12; and OR = 1.06, p = 0.11, 95% CI: 0.99, 1.13; respectively).
However, in the subgroup analysis by ethnicity, the significant association between rs553668 and the risk of T2D was obtained in Europeans under the recessive genetic model (OR = 1.36, p = 0.02, 95% CI: 1.05, 1.76).
The results of the meta-analyses indicated that both SNPs were associated with CHD in Caucasians (P < 0.05) but not in Asians. The results from our case-control study and meta-analyses might be explained by genetic heterogeneity in the susceptibility of CHD and ethnic differences between Asians and Caucasians.

Association between PCSK9 and LDLR gene polymorphisms with coronary heart disease: Case-control study and meta-analysis

Lina Zhang, Fang Yuan, Panpan Liu, Lijuan Fei, Yi Huang, Limin Xu, et al.
Clinical Biochemistry 2013; 46 (9): 727–732
► Association of rs11206510 and rs1122608 with CHD in 813 Chinese participants.
► The first association test of rs1122608 with the risk of CHD in Han Chinese.
► Meta-analyses were performed for rs11206510 and rs1122608.
► The two SNPs were associated with CHD in Caucasians but not in Asians.
To explore the association of rs11206510 (PCSK9 gene) and rs1122608 (LDLR gene) polymorphisms with coronary heart disease (CHD) in Han Chinese.
A total of 813 participants (290 CHD cases, 193 non-CHD controls and 330 healthy controls) were recruited in the case-control study. DNA genotyping was performed on the SEQUENOM® Mass–ARRAY iPLEX® platform. χ2-test was used to compare the genotype distribution and allele frequencies. Two meta-analyses were performed to establish the association between the two polymorphisms with CHD.
No significant associations between the two SNPs and the risk of CHD were observed in the present study. The meta-analysis of rs11206510 of PCSK9 gene comprises 11 case-control studies with a total of 69,054 participants. Significant heterogeneity was observed in Caucasian population in subgroup analysis of the association studies of rs11206510 with CHD (P = 0.003, I2 = 67.2%). The meta-analysis of LDLR gene rs1122608 polymorphism comprises 7 case-control studies with a total of 20,456 participants and the heterogeneity of seven studies was minimal (P = 0.148, I2 = 36.7%).
The results of the meta-analyses indicated that both SNPs were associated with CHD in Caucasians (P < 0.05) but not in Asians.

The effect of hyperhomocysteinemia on aortic distensibility in healthy individuals

I Eleftheriadou, P Grigoropoulou, I Moyssakis, A Kokkinos. et al.
Nutrition 18 Feb 2013; 29 (6): 876-880, PII: S0899-9007(13)00015-4
Elevated plasma homocysteine (HCY) levels have been associated with increased risk for cardiovascular disease. Aortic distensibility and aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV) are indices of aortic elasticity. The aim of the present study was to determine the effect of acute methionine-induced HHCY on aortic distensibility and PWV in healthy individuals and the effect of acute HHCY on myocardial performance of the left ventricle (Tei index).
Thirty healthy volunteers were included in this crossover study. Aortic distensibility and Tei index were determined non-invasively by ultrasonography at baseline and 3 h after methionine or water consumption, while PWV was measured by applanation tonometry at baseline and every 1 h for the same time interval.
Oral methionine induced an increase in total plasma HCY concentrations (P < 0.001), whereas HCY concentrations did not change after water consumption. Aortic distensibility decreased 3 h after methionine load (P < 0.001) and Tei index increased (P < 0.001), suggesting worsening compared with baseline values. Water consumption had no effect on aortic distensibility or Tei index values. PWV values did not change after either methionine or water consumption.
Acute methionine-induced HHCY reduces aortic distensibility and worsens myocardial performance in healthy individuals. Further research is warranted to examine in the long term the direct effects of HHCY on cardiovascular function and the indirect effects on structural remodeling.
Micrograph of an artery that supplies the hear...

Micrograph of an artery that supplies the heart with significant atherosclerosis and marked luminal narrowing. Tissue has been stained using Masson’s trichrome. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Estimated propability of death or non-fatal my...

Estimated propability of death or non-fatal myocardial-infarction over one year corresponding ti selectet values of the individual scores. Ordinate: individual score, abscissa: Propability of death or non-fatal myocardial infarction in 1 year (in %) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Read Full Post »

Revascularization: PCI, Prior History of PCI vs CABG

Curator: Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN


UPDATED 9/25/2013

Table. Comparison of Surgical Therapy and Coronary Angioplasty (Open Table in a new window)

Endpoint Pocock et al* Pocock et al BARI Study
CABG(N=358) PTCA(N=374) CABG(N=1303) PTCA(N=1336) CABG(N=914) PTCA(N=915)
Death (%) 0.3 1.9 2.8 3.1 10.7 13.7
Death or MI 4.5 7.2 8.5 8.1 11.7 10.9
Repeat CABG 1.4 16.0§ 0.8 18.3§ 0.7 20.5§
Repeat CABG or PTCA 3.6 30.5§ 3.2 34.5§ 8.0 54.0§
More than mild angina 6.5 14.6§ 12.1 17.8§
*Meta-analysis of results of 3 trials at 1 year. Patients with single-vessel disease were studied.[22] †Meta-analysis of results of 3 trials at 1 year. Patients with multivessel disease were studied.[22] 

‡Reported results are for 5-year follow-up. Patients with multivessel disease were studied.[21] 

§ P < .05.

BARI = Bypass Angioplasty Revascularization Investigation; CABG = coronary artery bypass grafting; MI = myocardial infarction; PTCA = percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty.



Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), also known as coronary angioplasty, is a nonsurgical technique for treating multiple conditions, including unstable angina, acute myocardial infarction (MI), and multivessel coronary artery disease (CAD).

Essential update: Cangrelor decreases periprocedural complications of PCI

According to a pooled analysis of 3 CHAMPION trials—CHAMPION-PCI , CHAMPION-PLATFORM , and CHAMPION-PHOENIX—cangrelor can reduce the risk of periprocedural thrombotic complications of PCI.[1, 2, 3] The 3 trials included patients with ST-elevation MI (STEMI), non-STEMI, and stable CAD who were randomly assigned to receive either cangrelor or control therapy consisting of either clopidogrel or placebo.

The primary outcome in this analysis was a composite of death, MI, ischemia-driven revascularization, or stent thrombosis at 48 hours.[2] The frequency of this outcome was significantly lower in cangrelor-treated patients than in control subjects (absolute difference, 1.9%; relative risk reduction [RRR], 19%). Stent thrombosis was also reduced in the cangrelor-treated group (absolute difference, 0.3%; RRR, 41%). Primary safety outcomes were comparable in the 2 groups, but cangrelor-treated patients had a higher rate of mild bleeding.

Indications and contraindications

Clinical indications for PCI include the following:

In an asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic patient, objective evidence of a moderate-sized to large area of viable myocardium or moderate to severe ischemia on noninvasive testing is an indication for PCI. Angiographic indications include hemodynamically significant lesions in vessels serving viable myocardium (vessel diameter >1.5 mm).

Clinical contraindications for PCI include the presence of any significant comorbid conditions (this is a relative contraindication). Angiographic contraindications include the following:

  • Left main stenosis in a patient who is a surgical candidate (except in carefully selected patients[4] )
  • Diffusely diseased small-caliber artery or vein graft
  • Other coronary anatomy not amenable to PCI

In patients with stable angina, medical therapy is recommended as first-line therapy unless one or more of the following indications for cardiac catheterization and PCI or CABG are present:

  • A change in symptom severity
  • Failed medical therapy
  • High-risk coronary anatomy
  • Worsening left ventricular (LV) dysfunction

American College of Cardiology Foundation/American Heart Association (ACCF/AHA) guidelines on the management of unstable angina/non-STEMI recommend that an early invasive approach (angiography and revascularization within 24 hours) should be used to treat patients presenting with the following high-risk features[5] :

  • Recurrent angina at rest or low level of activity
  • Elevated cardiac biomarkers
  • PCI in the past 6 months or prior CABG
  • New ST-segment depression
  • Elevated cardiac biomarkers
  • High-risk findings on noninvasive testing
  • Signs or symptoms of heart failure or new or worsening mitral regurgitation
  • Hemodynamic instability
  • Sustained ventricular tachycardia
  • LV systolic function < 40%
  • High risk score (eg, Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction [TIMI] score >2) (see the TIMI Score for Unstable Angina Non ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction calculator)

See Overview for more detail.


Balloon catheters for PCI have the following features:

  • A steerable guide wire precedes the balloon into the artery and permits navigation through the coronary tree
  • Inflation of the balloon compresses and axially redistributes atheromatous plaque and stretches the vessel wall
  • The balloon catheter also serves as an adjunctive device for many other interventional therapies

Atherectomy devices have the following features:

  • These devices are designed to physically remove coronary atheroma, calcium, and excess cellular material
  • Rotational atherectomy, which relies on plaque abrasion and pulverization, is used mostly for fibrotic or heavily calcified lesions that can be wired but not crossed or dilated by a balloon catheter
  • Atherectomy devices may be used to facilitate stent delivery in complex lesions
  • Directional coronary atherectomy (DCA) has been used to debulk coronary plaques
  • Laser atherectomy is not widely used at present
  • Atherectomy is typically followed by balloon dilation and stenting

Intracoronary stents have the following features:

  • Stents differ with respect to composition (eg, stainless steel, cobalt chromium, or nickel chromium), architectural design, and delivery system
  • Drug-eluting stents have demonstrated significant reductions in restenosis and target-lesion revascularization rates
  • In the United States, stents are available that elute the following drugs: sirolimus (Cypher), paclitaxel (Taxus), zotarolimus (Endeavor), and everolimus (Xience V)
  • Stents are conventionally placed after balloon predilation, but in selected coronary lesions, direct stenting may lead to better outcomes

Other devices used for PCI include the following:

  • Thrombus aspiration limits the adverse effects that prolonged time to treatment has on myocardial reperfusion[6]
  • Distal embolic protection during saphenous vein graft intervention has become the standard of care

See Periprocedural Care and Devices for more detail.


Intravascular ultrasonography (IVUS) is used in PCI as follows:

  • Provide information about the plaque, the vessel wall, and the degree of luminal narrowing
  • Assessment of indeterminate lesions
  • Evaluation of adequate stent deployment

Intracoronary Doppler pressure wires are used in PCI as follows:

  • To characterize coronary lesion physiology and estimate lesion severity
  • Comparison of pressure distal to a lesion with aortic pressure enables determination of fractional flow reserve (FFR)
  • An FFR measurement below 0.75-0.80 during maximal hyperemia (induced via administration of adenosine) is consistent with a hemodynamically significant lesion

Antithrombotic therapy

  • Aspirin and heparin have been the traditional adjunctive medical therapies
  • Direct thrombin inhibitors (ie, hirudin, bivalirudin) are slightly better than heparin in preventing ischemic complications during balloon angioplasty but do not affect restenosis rates
  • Low-molecular-weight heparins (LMWHs) are substituted for standard heparin at some centers

Antiplatelet therapy

Patients receiving stents are treated with a combination of aspirin and clopidogrel. Duration of therapy is as follows:

  • Bare-metal stents: A minimum of 4 weeks
  • Drug-eluting stents: A minimum of 12 months

Use of proton pump inhibitors is appropriate in patients with multiple risk factors for GI bleeding who require antiplatelet therapy.

Glycoprotein inhibitor therapy

  • Abciximab, tirofiban, and eptifibatide have all been shown to reduce ischemic complications in patients undergoing balloon angioplasty and coronary stenting
  • In primary PCI, GPIIb/IIIa receptor inhibitors have also been shown to improve flow and perfusion and to reduce adverse events
  • Abciximab may improve outcomes in patients when given before arrival in the catheterization lab for primary PCI[7]

See Technique and Medication for more detail.

SOURCE & References for the UPDATE, in


Outcomes comparison between PCI and CABG was explored in the past by authors on this Open Access Online Scientific Journal, in the following articles:

CABG or PCI: Patients with Diabetes – CABG Rein Supreme


To Stent or Not? A Critical Decision


PCI Outcomes, Increased Ischemic Risk associated with Elevated Plasma Fibrinogen not Platelet Reactivity


New Definition of MI Unveiled, Fractional Flow Reserve (FFR)CT for Tagging Ischemia


Age-Dependent Depression in Circulating Endothelial Progenitor Cells in Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting Patients


Now we are reporting  an Original Contribution on this subject which includes also Prior History of PCI, a factor NOT included in the other studies. The major conclusions are the following three:

  1. In a contemporary cohort of STEMI patients undergoing primary PCI, a history of prior CABG was found to be an independent predictor of in-hospital mortality.
  2. In contrast, despite more comorbidities at the time of STEMI, patients with prior PCI had no significant difference in the rates of death, stroke, or periprocedural MI when compared to a STEMI population without prior coronary revascularization.
  3. Thus, only prior surgical — and not percutaneousrevascularization should be considered a significant risk factor in the setting of primary PCI.

Number 1, above is related to patient medical history of cardiovascular disease SEVERITY prior to CABG

Number 2, above indicates that patients can tolerate and benefit several cycles of PCI and stent implantation rather than PCI being a determinant predictor of future prognosis

Number 3, above is as well related to patient medical history of cardiovascular disease SEVERITY prior to CABG

The Original Contribution on this subject is present, below.

The Impact of Previous Revascularization on Clinical Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Primary Percutaneous Coronary Intervention

Travis J. Bench, MD1, Puja B. Parikh, MD1, Allen Jeremias, MD1, Sorin J. Brener, MD2, Srihari S. Naidu, MD3,

Richard A. Shlofmitz, MD4, Thomas Pappas, MD4, Kevin P. Marzo, MD3, Luis Gruberg, MD1

Authors Affiliations:

1Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Stony Brook University Medical Center, Stony Brook, New York,

2Department of Cardiology, Methodist Hospital, Brooklyn, New York,

3Division of Cardiology, Winthrop University Hospital, Mineola,

New York, and

4The Heart Center, St Francis Hospital, Roslyn, New York.

The authors report no conflicts of interest regarding the content herein.

Manuscript submitted October 10, 2012, provisional acceptance given October 20, 2012, final version accepted November 28, 2012.

Address for correspondence: 

Luis Gruberg, MD, FACC, Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Health Sciences Center, T16-080, Stony Brook, NY 11794- 8160. Email: luis.gruberg@stonybrook.edu


Abstract : While the impact of prior coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG) on in-hospital outcomes in patients with STelevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) has been described, data are limited on patients with prior percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) undergoing primary PCI in the setting of an STEMI. The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of previous revascularization on in-hospital outcomes in STEMI patients undergoing primary PCI. Between January 2004 and December 2007, a total of 1649 patients underwent primary PCI for STEMI at four New York State hospitals. Baseline clinical and angiographic characteristics and in-hospital outcomes were prospectively collected as part of the New York State PCI Reporting System (PCIRS). Patients with prior surgical or percutaneous coronary revascularization were compared to those without prior coronary revascularization. Of the 1649 patients presenting with STEMI, a total of 93 (5.6%) had prior CABG, 258 (15.7%) had prior PCI, and 1298 (78.7%) had no history of prior coronary revascularization. Patients with prior CABG were significantly older and had higher rates of peripheral vascular disease, diabetes mellitus, congestive heart failure, and prior stroke. Additionally, compared with those patients with a history of prior PCI as well as those without prior coronary revascularization, patients with previous CABG had more left main interventions (24% vs 2% and 2%; P<.001), but were less often treated with drug-eluting stents (47% vs 61% and 72%; P<.001).

Despite a low incidence of adverse in-hospital events, prior CABG was associated with higher all-cause in-hospital mortality (6.5% vs 2.2%; P=.012), and as a result, higher overall MACE (6.5% vs 2.7%; P=.039). By multivariate analysis, prior CABG (odds ratio, 3.40; 95% confidence interval, 1.15-10.00) was independently associated with in-hospital mortality. In contrast, patients with prior PCI had similar rates of MACE (4.3% vs 2.7%; P=.18) and inhospital mortality (3.1% vs 2.2%; P=.4) when compared to the de novo population. Patients with a prior history of CABG, but not prior PCI, undergoing primary PCI in the setting of STEMI have significantly worse in-hospital outcomes when compared with patients who had no prior history of coronary artery revascularization. Thus, only prior surgical — and not percutaneous — revascularization should be considered a significant risk factor in the setting of primary PCI.

J INVASIVE CARDIOL 2013;25(4):166-169

Key words: PCI risk factor, CABG

Demographics and Angiographic Characteristics

Between 2004 and 2007, a total of 25,025 patients underwent PCI at these medical institutions, and their data were prospectively collected and submitted as required by the New York State Department of Health. Of these patients, a total of 1649 underwent primary PCI in the setting of an STEMI and constituted our study population. In this group, a total

No Prior Revascularization (n = 1298)

Prior PCI (n = 258)

Prior CABG (n = 93)


Age (years) 61 ± 13 62 ± 12 67 ± 12 <.001

Male gender 956 (73.6%) 194 (75.2%) 76 (81.7%) .21

White 1165 (89.8%) 231 (89.5%) 87 (93.5%) .51

African-American 78 (6%) 18 (7%) 1 (1.1%) .51

Hispanic 91 (7%) 11 (4.3%) 4 (4.3%) .51

Medical history

Ejection fraction (%) 43 ± 12 44 ± 13 45 ± 11 .079

Diabetes mellitus 196 (15.1%) 69 (26.7%) 27 (29%) <.001

Peripheral vascular disease 53 (4.1%) 25 (9.7%) 12 (12.9%) <.001

Chronic lung disease 47 (3.6%) 17 (6.6%) 4 (4.3%) .09

Congestive heart failure 74 (5.7%) 25 (9.7%) 10 (10.8%) .02

Prior myocardial infarction 3 (0.2%) 1 (0.4%) 1 (1.1%) .35

Prior cerebrovascular event 56 (4.3%) 9 (3.5%) 10 (11%) .01

Chronic dialysis 6 (0.5%) 6 (2.3%) 0 (0%) .004

Creatinine (mg/dL) 1.1 ± 0.8 1.3 ± 1.4 1.3 ± 1.1 .002

Glomerular filtration rate (mL/min/1.73 m2) 79 ± 26 75 ± 28 71 ± 27 .002

Angiographic characteristics

Left main 19 (1.5%) 5 (1.9%) 22 (23.7%) <.001

Left anterior descending 942 (72.6%) 178 (69%) 69 (74.2%) .45

Left circumflex 579 (44.6%) 122 (47.3%) 70 (75.3%) <.001

Right coronary 806 (62.1%) 187 (72.5%) 67 (72%) .002

Graft (arterial or venous) n/a n/a 20 (21.5%)

Stent type

Bare-metal stent 241 (18.6%) 52 (20.2%) 23 (24.7%) .31

Drug-eluting stent 928 (71.5%) 158 (61.2%) 44 (47.3%) <.001

of 1298 patients (78.7%) had no prior history of revascularization,

while 93 patients (5.6%) had a history of previous

CABG and 258 (15.7%) had a history of previous PCI. Considerable

differences in baseline clinical and procedural characteristics were noted among these groups (Table 1).


While STEMI patients with prior CABG are well known to have worse clinical outcomes than those without prior revascularization, a direct comparison between patients who underwent primary PCI in the setting of prior CABG or prior PCI has not yet been reported. The principal findings from the present analysis suggest that in a contemporary, unrestricted patient population presenting with STEMI and undergoing primary PCI, patients with a prior history of CABG are:

(1) usually older and have multiple comorbidities, including peripheral vascular disease, diabetes, and chronic obstructive lung disease;

(2) are more likely to undergo intervention on a native vessel and not a bypass graft;

(3) are more likely to be treated with bare-metal stents; and (4) have higher rates of in-hospital mortality without a significant increase in stroke or MI rates, when compared with patients with a prior history of PCI or patients with no previous history of coronary artery revascularization. Interestingly, these outcomes did not apply to patients with a history of prior PCI in this analysis. Instead, this cohort of patients had no significant difference in the rate of death, stroke, or periprocedural infarction when compared to a STEMI population without prior coronary revascularization, despite a significantly higher burden of comorbidities than those with no prior revascularization.

Our findings concur with previous studies that have shown higher mortality rates among patients with prior surgical bypass presenting with acute MI.7,9,14 Despite changes in revascularization strategies over the past 30 years, invasive therapies to treat acute coronary syndromes in patients with prior bypass surgery appear to have yielded less robust results than in other populations. In fact, Stone and colleagues already described in the Primary Angioplasty in Myocardial Infarction (PAMI-2) study that patients with a previous CABG undergoing primary PCI in the setting of an acute MI had significantly greater in-hospital mortality than patients without previous CABG, especially if the infarct-related vessel was a bypass conduit. However, by logistic regression analysis, only advanced age (P=.004), triple-vessel disease (P=.004), and Killip class ≥2 (P=.02) were independent predictors of in-hospital mortality in that study.13 In a more contemporary study of 128 STEMI patients with prior CABG, who were enrolled in the Assessment of PEXelizumab in Acute

Figure 1. In-hospital major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events (MACCE), mortality, and stroke rates for patients without prior history of coronary revascularization (light grey bars), prior percutaneous coronary revascularization (PCI) (dark grey bars), and prior coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) (black bars). Vol. 25, No. 4, April 2013 169

STEMI and Prior Revascularization Myocardial Infarction (APEX-AMI) trial, Welsh and colleagues reported that post-CABG patients are less likely to undergo acute reperfusion (only 79% underwent primary PCI), have worse angiographic outcomes following primary PCI, and have higher 90-day mortality rates (19.0% vs 5.7%; P=.05). This difference was even more apparent when the infarct-related artery was a bypass graft that was not successfully reperfused (23.1% vs 8.5%; P=.03).3 These results are similar to our current analysis, where in-hospital mortality rates for patients who underwent primary PCI of a graft were numerically roughly 4 times as high as those undergoing PCI of a native vessel. Likewise, Gurfinkel et al reported a significant reduction in hard endpoints, such as all-cause death and MI at 6 months in patients treated with an invasive approach in the Global Registry of Acute Coronary Events (GRACE).15 In this large, multinational, observational study of 3853 patients with prior bypass surgery presenting with an acute coronary syndrome, only 497 (12.9%) were managed invasively and the rest were treated medically.

Despite significant differences in baseline characteristics, including a higher rate of STEMI in patients treated invasively (14% vs 27%; P<.001), in-hospital mortality was similar in both groups (3.4% vs 3.2%; P=.86). However, at 6-month follow-up, mortality was significantly higher in those patients treated medically (6.5% vs 3.4%; P<.02) as was the combined endpoint of death or MI (11% vs 5.8%; P<.01).

Whether these results apply to patients with a prior history of PCI has not been well defined. By the nature of vascular disease, patients with prior PCI are more likely to have more comorbidities than those without prior revascularization, a finding confirmed in our study. Despite considerable differences in baseline characteristics, however, these differences did not translate into a differential risk after STEMI. In fact, the cohort of patients presenting with STEMI who had a history of prior PCI had no statistically significant difference in in-hospital mortality or overall MACCE when compared to a population of patients presenting with STEMI in the absence of any prior revascularization.

Study limitations. The database utilized was derived from four New York State teaching hospitals and was designed to track quality of care and clinical outcomes. As all studies involving multicenter databases and registries, there is potential error in data entry and availability. Potential confounding comorbidities, including smoking status and family history of coronary artery disease, were not collected in this database, and information regarding long-term follow-up is not available, all of which are important limitations of this analysis. As such, deficiencies such as these limit the conclusions that can be drawn from our multivariate analysis. Additionally, there is no audit of data quality, and the low overall event rates limit effective statistical comparison.


In a contemporary cohort of STEMI patients undergoing primary PCI, a history of prior CABG was found to be an independent predictor of in-hospital mortality. In contrast, despite more comorbidities at the time of STEMI, patients with prior PCI had no significant difference in the rates of death, stroke, or periprocedural MI when compared to a STEMI population without prior coronary revascularization. Thus, only prior surgical — and not percutaneous — revascularization should be considered a significant risk factor in the setting of primary PCI.


1. Kushner FG, Hand M, Smith SC Jr, et al. 2009 focused updates: ACC/AHA guidelines for the management of patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (updating the 2004 guideline and 2007 focused update) and ACC/AHA/SCAI guidelines on percutaneous coronary intervention (updating the 2005 guideline and 2007 focused update): a report of the American College of Cardiology Foundation/American Heart Association Task Force on Practice Guidelines. Catheter Cardiovasc Interv. 2009;74(7):E25-E68.

2. Keeley EC, Boura JA, Grines CL. Primary angioplasty versus intravenous thrombolytic therapy for acute myocardial infarction: a quantitative review of 23 randomised trials. Lancet. 2003;361(9351):13-20.

3. Welsh RC, Granger CB, Westerhout CM, et al. Prior coronary artery bypass graft patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction treated with primary percutaneous coronary intervention. JACC Cardiovasc Interv. 2010;3(3):343-351.

4. Mathew V, Gersh B, Barron H, et al. In-hospital outcome of acute myocardial infarction in patients with prior coronary artery bypass surgery. Am Heart J. 2002;144(3):463-469.

5. Lee KL, Woodlief LH, Topol EJ, et al. Predictors of 30-day mortality in the era of reperfusion for acute myocardial infarction. Results from an international trial of 41,021 patients. GUSTO-I Investigators. Circulation. 1995;91(6):1659-1668.

6. Dittrich HC, Gilpin E, Nicod P, et al. Outcome after acute myocardial infarction in patients with prior coronary artery bypass surgery. Am J Cardiol. 1993;72(7):507-513.

7. Berry C, Pieper KS, White HD, et al. Patients with prior coronary artery bypass grafting have a poor outcome after myocardial infarction: an analysis of the VALsartan in acute myocardial iNfarcTion trial (VALIANT). Eur Heart J. 2009;30(12):1450-1456.

8. Grines CL, Booth DC, Nissen SE, et al. Mechanism of acute myocardial infarction in patients with prior coronary artery bypass grafting and therapeutic implications. Am J Cardiol. 1990;65(20):1292-1296.

9. Labinaz M, Sketch MH Jr, Ellis SG, et al. Outcome of acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction in patients with prior coronary artery bypass surgery receiving thrombolytic therapy. Am Heart J. 2001;141(3):469-477.

10. Peterson LR, Chandra NC, French WJ, Rogers WJ, Weaver WD, Tiefenbrunn AJ. Reperfusion therapy in patients with acute myocardial infarction and prior coronary artery bypass graft surgery (National Registry of Myocardial Infarction-2). Am J Cardiol. 1999;84(11):1287-1291.

11. Nguyen TT, O’Neill WW, Grines CL, et al. One-year survival in patients with acute myocardial infarction and a saphenous vein graft culprit treated with primary angioplasty. Am J Cardiol. 2003;91(10):1250-1254.

12. Al Suwaidi J, Velianou JL, Berger PB, et al. Primary percutaneous coronary interventions in patients with acute myocardial infarction and prior coronary artery bypass grafting, Am Heart J. 2001;142(3):452-459.

13. Stone GW, Brodie BR, Griffin JJ, et al. Clinical and angiographic outcomes in patients with previous coronary artery bypass graft surgery treated with primary balloon angioplasty for acute myocardial infarction. Second Primary Angioplasty in Myocardial Infarction Trial (PAMI-2) Investigators. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2000;35(3):605-611.

14. Labinaz M, Kilaru R, Pieper K, et al. Outcomes of patients with acute coronary syndromes and prior coronary artery bypass grafting: results from the platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa in unstable angina: receptor suppression using integrilin therapy (PURSUIT) trial. Circulation. 2002;105(3):322-327.

15. Gurfinkel EP, Perez de la Hoz R, Brito VM, et al. Invasive vs non-invasive treatment in acute coronary syndromes and prior bypass surgery. Int J Cardiol. 2007;119(1):65-72.


Other related studies on this subject published on this Open Access Online Scientific Journal include the following:

Lev-Ari, A. 2/12/2013 Clinical Trials on transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) to be conducted by American College of Cardiology and the Society of Thoracic Surgeons



Lev-Ari, A. 12/31/2012 Renal Sympathetic Denervation: Updates on the State of Medicine



Lev-Ari, A. 9/2/2012 Imbalance of Autonomic Tone: The Promise of Intravascular Stimulation of Autonomics


Lev-Ari, A. 8/13/2012 Coronary Artery Disease – Medical Devices Solutions: From First-In-Man Stent Implantation, via Medical Ethical Dilemmas to Drug Eluting Stents https://pharmaceuticalintelligence.com/2012/08/13/coronary-artery-disease-medical-devices-solutions-from-first-in-man-stent-implantation-via-medical-ethical-dilemmas-to-drug-eluting-stents/


Lev-Ari, A. 7/18/2012 Percutaneous Endocardial Ablation of Scar-Related Ventricular Tachycardia



Lev-Ari, A. 6/13/2012 Treatment of Refractory Hypertension via Percutaneous Renal Denervation


Lev-Ari, A. 6/22/2012 Competition in the Ecosystem of Medical Devices in Cardiac and Vascular Repair: Heart Valves, Stents, Catheterization Tools and Kits for Open Heart and Minimally Invasive Surgery (MIS)


Lev-Ari, A. 6/19/2012 Executive Compensation and Comparator Group Definition in the Cardiac and Vascular Medical Devices Sector: A Bright Future for Edwards Lifesciences Corporation in the Transcatheter Heart Valve Replacement Market



Lev-Ari, A. 6/22/2012 Global Supplier Strategy for Market Penetration & Partnership Options (Niche Suppliers vs. National Leaders) in the Massachusetts Cardiology & Vascular Surgery Tools and Devices Market for Cardiac Operating Rooms and Angioplasty Suites



Lev-Ari, A. 7/23/2012 Heart Remodeling by Design: Implantable Synchronized Cardiac Assist Device: Abiomed’s Symphony



Lev-Ari, A. (2006b). First-In-Man Stent Implantation Clinical Trials & Medical Ethical Dilemmas. Bouve College of Health Sciences, Northeastern University, Boston, MA 02115


Read Full Post »

Author and Reporter: Anamika Sarkar, Ph.D.

Among many important roles of Nitric oxide (NO), one of the key actions is to act as a vasodilator and maintain cardiovascular health. Induction of NO is regulated by signals in tissue as well as endothelium.

Importance of NO has been nicely reviewed in the article  “Discovery of NO and its effects of vascular biology”. Other articles which are good readings for the importance of NO are  – a) regulation of glycolysis b) NO in cardiovascular disease c) NO and Immune responses Part I and Part II d) NO signaling pathways (Also, please see Source for more articles on NO and its significance).

The rate of production of NO has been established to be dependent on Wall Shear Stress (WSS) (Mashour and Broock, Brain Res., 1999) . Many mathematical models have been developed as 2D diffusion models to predict distribution of NO transport in single vessels, eg. arterioles (Please see Sources for references ).

Chen et. al. (Med. Biol. Eng. Comp., 2011) developed a 3-D model consisting of two branched arterioles and nine capillaries surrounding the vessels. Their model not only takes into account of the 3-D volume, but also branching effects on blood flow (Please see Fig 1 and Fig 2 from Chen et. al. 2011 ).


Fig. 1 Blood phase separation with vascular branching. RBC
fractional flow in daughter branch alpha is not necessarily equal
to that in branch beta


The mathematical model considers dynamic characteristics related to blood flow, blood vessel structures and transport mechanism in the wall. The authors have considered effects of branching and ratio of diameters between blood vessels of parent and children to determine the fractional blood flow which gets distributed in the network. These branching effects of the vessels will also affect the blood volume or RBC (Red Blood Cell), hence NO consumption in the blood. Parameters in the model are either obtained or fitted with experimental results from literature. Their model assumes a linear relationship of NO production with wall shear stress which in turn will be regulated by blood flow determined by branching characteristics of blood vessels. Moreover, the mathematical model includes transport of NO through the blood vessels in the tissue (in the defined volume of the model) as diffusion model,. The model was solved using Finite Elements method using the software COMSOL.

Their model results show that wall shear stress changes depending upon the distribution of RBC in the microcirculations of blood vessels, which leads to differential production of NO along the vascular network. Levels of NO at vascular walls can be less in branches which receive more blood flow, due to the balance between higher consumption of NO by RBC and production of NO due to high wall stress.  Their 3-D simulations showed the importance of capillaries such that NO can be concentrated in tissues far away in distance from arterioles facilitating much controlled NO regulation.

Though, the 3-D model developed by Chen et. al., (2011) is an idealized mathematical model of blood flow with production and consumption of NO, depending upon WSS, yet it shows importance of structure of blood vessels in distributions of NO in vessels and tissues. Such a model with proper extension to larger network can give more insights into differential distributions of NO as a function of blood flow and wall shear stress. As nano-medicine become sophisticated in years to come, information of distribution of NO in tissues and blood vessels can help the medicine to be more targeted.


Chen et.al. (2011) : http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21431938

Mashour and Broock, Brain Res., 1999: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=10526117

Mathematical Modes of NO Distribution in 2-D

Other research on Nitric Oxide and Vascular Biology on this Scientific Web Site include the following:

Nitric Oxide and Immune Responses: Part 1

Curator and Reporter: Aviral Vatsa, 10/18/2012


Clinical Trials Results for Endothelin System: Pathophysiological role in Chronic Heart Failure, Acute Coronary Syndromes and MI – Marker of Disease Severity or Genetic Determination?

Curator: Aviva Lev-Ari, 10/19/2012


Nitric Oxide and Sepsis, Hemodynamic Collapse, and the Search for Therapeutic Options

Curator and Reporter: Larry Bernstein, MD, 10/20/2012


Mitochondrial Damage and Repair under Oxidative Stress

Curator: Larry H Bernstein, MD, FCAP, 10/28/2012


Nitric Oxide and Immune Responses: Part 2

Curator: Aviral Vatsa, PhD, MBBS, 10/28/2012


Differential Distribution of Nitric Oxide – A 3-D Mathematical Model

Author: Anamika Sarkar, PhD, 10/28/2012


Statins’ Nonlipid Effects on Vascular Endothelium through eNOS Activation

Curator, EAW: Larry Bernstein, 10/8/2012


Nitric Oxide Nutritional remedies for hypertension and atherosclerosis. It’s 12 am: do you know where your electrons are?

Author and Reporter: Meg Baker, 10/7/2012.


Inhibition of ET-1, ETA and ETA-ETB, Induction of NO production, stimulation of eNOS and Treatment Regime with PPAR-gamma agonists (TZD): cEPCs Endogenous Augmentation for Cardiovascular Risk Reduction – A Bibliography

Curator: Aviva Lev-Ari, 10/4/2012.


Coronary Artery Disease – Medical Devices Solutions: From First-In-Man Stent Implantation, via Medical Ethical Dilemmas to Drug Eluting Stents August 13, 2012

Author: Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN, 8/13/2012


Vascular Medicine and Biology: CLASSIFICATION OF FAST ACTING THERAPY FOR PATIENTS AT HIGH RISK FOR MACROVASCULAR EVENTS Macrovascular Disease – Therapeutic Potential of cEPCs

Curator; Aviva Lev-Ari, PhD, RN, 8/24/2012



Read Full Post »

Older Posts »