Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin does not predict acute kidney injury in heart failure

Fiorenza Ferrari, Elisa Scalzotto, Pasquale Esposito, Sara Samoni, Flavio Mistrorigo, Lilia Maria Rizo Topete, Massimo De Cal, Grazia Maria Virzì, Valentina Corradi, Rossella Torregrossa, Roberto Valle, Stefania Bianzina, Nadia Aspromonte, Matteo Floris, Alessandro Fontanelli, Alessandra Brendolan, Claudio Ronco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Acute cardiorenal syndrome type 1 (CRS-1) is defined by a rapid cardiac dysfunction leading to acute kidney injury (AKI). Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) is expressed on the surface of human neutrophils and epithelial cells, such as renal tubule cells, and its serum (sNGAL) and urinary have been used to predict AKI in different clinical settings.

AIM: To characterize CRS-1 in a cohort of patients with acute heart diseases, evaluating the potentiality of sNGAL as an early marker of CRS-1.

METHODS: We performed a retrospective cohort, multi-centre study. From January 2010 to December 2011, we recruited 202 adult patients admitted to the coronary intensive care unit (CICU) with a diagnosis of acute heart failure or acute coronary syndrome. We monitored the renal function to evaluate CRS-1 development and measured sNGAL levels within 24 h and after 72 h of CICU admission.

RESULTS: Overall, enrolled patients were hemodynamically stable with a mean arterial pressure of 92 (82-107) mmHg, 55/202 (27.2%) of the patients developed CRS-1, but none of them required dialysis. Neither the NGAL delta value (AUC 0.40, 95%CI: 0.25-0.55) nor the NGAL peak (AUC 0.45, 95%CI: 0.36-0.54) or NGAL cut-off (≥ 140 ng/mL) values were statistically significant between the two groups (CRS-1 vs no-CRS1 patients). The area under the ROC curve for the prediction of CRS-1 was 0.40 (95%CI: 0.25-0.55) for the delta NGAL value and 0.45 (95%CI: 0.36-0.54) for the NGAL peak value. Finally, in multivariate analysis, the risk of developing CRS-1 was correlated with age > 60 years, urea nitrogen at admission and 24 h-urine output (AUC 0.83, SE = 60.5% SP = 93%), while sNGAL was not significantly correlated.

CONCLUSION: In our population, sNGAL does not predict CRS-1, probably as a consequence of the mild renal injury and the low severity of heart disease. So, these data might suggest that patient selection should be taken into account when considering the utility of NGAL measurement as a biomarker of kidney damage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1600-1607
Number of pages8
JournalWorld Journal of Clinical Cases
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - May 6 2020


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