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Elevated Cardiac Biomarkers Linked to Higher Mortality

Apparently healthy adults have a higher risk of death from all causes

TUESDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- Apparently healthy older adults with elevated levels of at least one of two plasma biomarkers of cardiovascular disease have a higher risk of death from cardiac and noncardiac causes, according to a study in the Aug. 5 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Lori B. Daniels, M.D., from the University of California at San Diego and colleagues measured the plasma levels of cardiac troponin T (TnT) and N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) in 957 community-dwelling adults (30 to 79 years old).

After seven to nine years, the researchers found that subjects with detectable TnT (at least 0.01 nanograms per milliliter) had a significantly higher risk of both all-cause mortality and cardiovascular mortality (adjusted hazard ratio 2.06 for both). Subjects with elevated NT-proBNP also had a significantly higher risk of both all-cause mortality (adjusted hazard ratio 1.85 per log-unit increase) and cardiovascular mortality (adjusted hazard ratio 2.51 per log-unit increase). Survival was significantly worse in individuals with both detectable TnT and elevated NT-proBNP (adjusted hazard ratio 3.2).

"Apparently healthy adults with detectable TnT or elevated NT-proBNP levels are at increased risk of death," Daniels and colleagues conclude. "Those with both TnT and NT-proBNP elevations are at even higher risk, and the increased risk persists for years."

Roche Diagnostics Inc. provided the reagents for analyzing the biomarkers and grants for two of the authors.

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