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Int J Cardiol. 2019 Aug 15;289:107-109. doi: 10.1016/j.ijcard.2019.04.063. Epub 2019 Apr 25.

Circulating cytokines predict severity of rheumatic heart disease.

Author information

1
Post Graduate Programe in Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, School of Medicine, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil; FIPMoc University Center, Montes Claros, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
2
Laboratory of Cell-Cell Interactions, Department of Morphology, Institute of Biological Sciences, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
3
Children's National Health System, Washington DC, USA.
4
The Heart Institute, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio USA.
5
Post Graduate Programe in Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, School of Medicine, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
6
International Center for Research, AC Camargo Cancer Center, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil; Instituto Nacional de Ciência e Tecnologia em Doenças Tropicais, INCT-DT, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
7
Laboratory of Cell-Cell Interactions, Department of Morphology, Institute of Biological Sciences, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil; Instituto Nacional de Ciência e Tecnologia em Doenças Tropicais, INCT-DT, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
8
Post Graduate Programe in Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine, School of Medicine, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Electronic address: mcarmo@waymail.com.br.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Rheumatic heart disease (RHD) is associated with inflammation that damages cardiac valves, often requiring surgical interventions. The underlying mechanisms involved in the disease progression are not completely understood. This study aimed to evaluate cytokine plasma levels in patients with RHD as possible markers of disease severity.

METHODS AND RESULTS:

Eighty-nine patients with RHD, age of 41 years ±11.5 years, were prospectively enrolled. RHD severity was defined as valve dysfunction that required invasive intervention, either valve repair or replacement. Peripheral blood samples were collected from all patients for cytokine measurements. The patients were followed up to look at adverse clinical events defined as either the need for valve intervention or death. At baseline, 64 (71.9%) patients had previously undergone valve intervention, whereas 25 patients had stable clinical presentation. Patients with severe RHD displayed higher levels of inflammatory cytokines than patients with stable disease. Cluster analysis showed segregation of severe and stable RHD based on IL-6/TNF-α and IL-6/IL-17A, respectively. IL-6 and TNF-α expression were positively correlated in severe but not in stable RHD patients. During a median follow-up of 23 months, 16 patients (18%) had an adverse outcome. IL-10 at baseline (HR 1.24, 95% CI 1.08-1.43, p = 0.003), and IL-4 (HR 1.12, 95% CI 1.01-1.24, p = 0.041) were predictors of events during the follow-up.

CONCLUSIONS:

High levels of cytokines are associated with severity of RHD. The co-regulated expression of IL-6 and TNF-α is associated with severe valve dysfunction, whereas high IL-10 and IL-4 levels predicted subsequently adverse outcome.

KEYWORDS:

Cytokines; Disease marker; Disease severity; Inflammatory response; Rheumatic heart disease; Valve intervention

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