Haemostatic and inflammatory biomarkers in advanced chronic heart failure: Role of oral anticoagulants and successful heart transplantation

Massimo Cugno, Daniela Mari, Pier Luigi Meroni, Edoardo Gronda, Francesco Vicari, Maria Frigerio, Raffaella Coppola, Bianca Bottasso, Maria Orietta Borghi, Luisa Gregorini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Advanced chronic heart failure (CHF) is associated with abnormal haemostasis and inflammation, but it is not known how these abnormalities are related, whether they are modified by oral anticoagulants (OAT), or if they persist after successful heart transplantation. We studied 25 patients with CHF (New York Heart Association class IV, 10 of whom underwent heart transplantation) and 25 age- and sex-matched healthy controls by measuring their plasma levels of prothrombin fragment 1 + 2 (F1 + 2), thrombin-antithrombin (TAT) complexes, tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA), plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), D-dimer, factor VII (FVII), fibrinogen, von Willebrand factor (VWF), tumour necrosis factor (TNF), soluble TNF receptor II (sTNFRII), interleukin 6 (IL-6), soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1), soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1), endothelial-selectin (E-selectin) and thrombomodulin. CHF patients had higher plasma levels of TAT, D-dimer, t-PA, fibrinogen, VWF, TNF, IL-6, sTNFRII, sVCAM-1 (P = 0.0001), sICAM-1 (P = 0.003) and thrombomodulin (P = 0.007) than controls. There were significant correlations (r = 0.414-0.595) between coagulation, fibrinolysis, endothelial dysfunction and inflammation parameters, which were lower in those patients treated with OATs. Heart transplantation led to reductions in fibrinogen (P = 0.001), VWF (P = 0.05), D-dimer (P = 0.05) and IL-6 levels (P = 0.05), but all the parameters remained significantly higher (P = 0.01-0.0001) than in the controls. Advanced CHF is associated with coagulation activation, endothelial dysfunction and increased pro inflammatory cytokine levels. Most of these abnormalities parallel each other, tend to normalize in patients treated with OATs and, although reduced, persist in patients undergoing successful heart transplantation, despite the absence of clinical signs of CHF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-92
Number of pages8
JournalBritish Journal of Haematology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2004


  • Coagulation
  • Heart failure
  • Heart transplantation
  • Inflammation
  • Oral anticoagulants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology


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