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J Heart Lung Transplant. 2007 Oct;26(10):1033-9.

Beta-blockers influence the short-term and long-term prognostic information of natriuretic peptides and catecholamines in chronic heart failure independent from specific agents.

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  • 1Department of Cardiology, Angiology, Pneumology, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany.



In chronic heart failure (CHF), the physiologic effects of natriuretic peptides and catecholamines are interdependent. Furthermore, reports state an agent-dependent effect of individual beta-blockers on biomarkers. Data on the short-term and long-term predictive power comparing these biomarkers as well as accounting for the influence of beta-blocker treatment both on the marker or the resultant prognostic information are scarce.


We included 513 consecutive patients with systolic CHF, measured atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP), N-terminal prohormone brain natriuretic peptide (NTproBNP), noradrenaline, and adrenaline, and monitored them for 90 +/- 25 months. Death or the combination of death and cardiac transplantation at 1 year, 5 years, and overall follow-up were considered end points.


Compared with patients not taking beta-blockers, patients taking beta-blockers had significantly lower levels of catecholamines but not natriuretic peptides. Only for adrenaline was the amount of this effect related to the specific beta-blocker chosen. Receiver operating characteristic curves demonstrated superior prognostic accuracy for NTproBNP both at the 1- and 5-year follow-up compared with ANP, noradrenaline, and adrenaline. In multivariate analysis including established risk markers (New York Heart Association functional class, left ventricular ejection fraction, peak oxygen uptake, and 6-minute walk test), of all neurohumoral parameters, only NTproBNP remained an independent predictor for both end points.


Long-term beta-blocker therapy is associated with decreased levels of plasma catecholamines but not natriuretic peptides. This effect is independent from the actual beta-blocker chosen for natriuretic peptides and noradrenaline. In multivariate analysis, both for short-term and long-term prediction of mortality or the combined end point of death and cardiac transplantation, only NTproBNP remained independent from established clinical risk markers.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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