Factor Xa Inhibition with Apixaban Does Not Influence Cardiac Remodelling in Rats with Heart Failure After Myocardial Infarction

Salva Yurista, Herman Sillje, Kirsten Nijholt, Martin Dokter, Dirk Jan van Veldhuisen, Rudolf Boer, de, Daan Westenbrink*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Background: Heart failure (HF) is considered to be a prothrombotic condition and it has been suggested that coagulation factors contribute to maladaptive cardiac remodelling via activation of the protease-activated receptor 1 (PAR1). We tested the hypothesis that anticoagulation with the factor Xa (FXa) inhibitor apixaban would ameliorate cardiac remodelling in rats with HF after myocardial infarction (MI). Methods and Results: Male Sprague-Dawley rats were either subjected to permanent ligation of the left ascending coronary artery (MI) or sham surgery. The MI and sham animals were randomly allocated to treatment with placebo or apixaban in the chow (150 mg/kg/day), starting 2 weeks after surgery. Cardiac function was assessed using echocardiography and histological and molecular markers of cardiac hypertrophy were assessed in the left ventricle (LV). Apixaban resulted in a fivefold increase in anti-FXa activity compared with vehicle, but no overt bleeding was observed and haematocrit levels remained similar in apixaban- and vehicle-treated groups. After 10 weeks of treatment, LV ejection fraction was 42 ± 3% in the MI group treated with apixaban and 37 ± 2 in the vehicle-treated MI group (p > 0.05). Both vehicle- and apixaban-treated MI groups also displayed similar degrees of LV dilatation, LV hypertrophy and interstitial fibrosis. Histological and molecular markers for pathological remodelling were also comparable between groups, as was the activity of signalling pathways downstream of the PAR1 receptor. Conclusion: FXa inhibition with apixaban does not influence pathological cardiac remodelling after MI. These data do not support the use of FXa inhibitor in HF patients with the aim to amend the severity of HF. [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)953-963
Number of pages11
JournalCardiovascular Drugs and Therapy
Early online date26-May-2020
Publication statusPublished - Oct-2021


  • Anticoagulant . Heart failure . Cardiac function . Cardiac remodelling

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