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eISSN: 1643-3750

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Combined Use of Circulating miR-133a and NT-proBNP Improves Heart Failure Diagnostic Accuracy in Elderly Patients

Meizi Guo, Jun Luo, Junli Zhao, Dongya Shang, Qing Lv, Panpan Zang

(Department of Gereology and Cardiology, Shanghai University of Medicine and Health Sciences Affiliated Zhoupu Hospital, Shanghai, China (mainland))

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24:8840-8848

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.911632


BACKGROUND: Circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) are emerging as novel biomarkers for detecting cardiovascular diseases. Here, circulating miR-133a and miR-221 were investigated as potential diagnostic biomarkers for heart failure (HF) patients, particularly in elderly patients.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: A total of 94 elderly HF patients (mean age=77.4 years old) and 31 healthy controls (age- and sex-matched) participated in this study. Plasma NT-proBNP levels were measured using an electrochemiluminescence immunoassay, and circulating miR-133a and miR-221 levels were examined using real-time quantitative PCR, with diagnostic efficacies determined for each independently and in combination.
RESULTS: MiR-133a expression increased by 4.6-fold (P<0.001) and miR-221 expression increased by 2.0-fold (P<0.001) in the elderly HF patients relative to the healthy controls. ROC curves were generated and AUC values of 0.863 for miR-133a (CI95%: 0.800–0.927), 0.718 for miR-221 (CI95%: 0.622–0.813), and 0.895 for NT-proBNP (CI95%: 0.841–0.948) were obtained. Unlike NT-proBNP, miR-133a and miR-221 were found to be unaffected by age, BMI, renal function, albumin, or Hb levels. More importantly, the diagnostic value of NT-proBNP was found to be improved when combined with any of the examined miRNA biomarkers alone or in a panel. When combining miR-133a with NT-proBNP, an AUC value of 0.975 (CI95%: 0.950–0.999) was obtained, which was significantly higher than for NT-proBNP alone (z=2.395, P=0.016).
CONCLUSIONS: miR-133a and miR-221 can serve as potential HF diagnostic biomarkers in elderly patients. Moreover, the diagnostic accuracy of NT-proBNP can be improved by the addition of miR-133a.

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