BACKGROUND: Several clinical studies have evaluated the association between galectin-3 levels and outcome in patients with heart failure (HF). However, little is known about the predictive value of repeated galectin-3 measurements. This study evaluates the prognostic value of repeated time-dependent galectin-3 measurements in acute HF patients.
METHODS AND RESULTS: In the TRIUMPH (Translational Initiative on Unique and Novel Strategies for Management of Patients with Heart Failure) clinical cohort study, 496 acute HF patients were enrolled in 14 hospitals in The Netherlands, between 2009 and 2014. Repeated blood samples (7) were drawn during 1-year follow-up. Associations between repeated biomarker measurements and the primary end point were assessed using a joint model. Median age was 74 years and 37% were women. The primary end point, composite of all-cause mortality and HF rehospitalization, was reached in 188 patients (40%), during a median follow-up of 325 days (interquartile range 85-401). The median baseline galectin-3 level was 24 ng/mL (interquartile range 18-34). The mean number of galectin-3 measurements available per patient was 4.3. After adjustment for clinical factors and N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide, there was a weak association between baseline galectin-3 and risk of the primary end point. When repeated measurements were taken into account, the adjusted hazard ratio per 1 SD increase of the galectin-3 level (on the log2 scale) at any time point increased to 1.67 (95% confidence interval, 1.24-2.23, P<0.001). After additional adjustment for repeated N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide measurements, the association remained statistically significant.
CONCLUSIONS: Repeated galectin-3 measurements appeared to be a strong predictor of outcome in acute HF patients, independent of N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide. Hence, galectin-3 may be helpful in clinical practice for prognostication and treatment monitoring.
- Journal Article