FEB 25, 2020 2:14 PM PST

Simple Blood Test May Prevent Deaths from Heart Attack

WRITTEN BY: Annie Lennon

Cardiovascular disease is responsible for almost 18 million deaths every year, making it the top killing-disease in the world. Now, researchers at Newcastle University in the UK have found that a simple blood test may be able to identify cardiovascular ageing and thus one’s risk of developing the disease.  

Working with several international scientists, Professor Konstantinos Stellos and his team from Newcastle University examined blood samples from over 6,600 people from various studies taking place across nine countries. In analyzing the patients, they found that they could be divided into high and low risk categories for cardiovascular disease based on levels of amyloid-beta present in their blood.. 

Although typically associated with the development of Alzheimer’s disease, scientists now suspect that amyloid-beta protein may also play a significant role in vascular stiffening, the thickening of the arteries, heart failure and other cardiovascular ailments. 

Stellos said, “Our work has created and put all the pieces of the puzzle together. For the first time, we have provided evidence of the involvement of amyloid-beta in early and later stages of cardiovascular disease. What is really exciting is that we were able to reproduce these unexpected, clinically meaningful findings in patients from around the world. In all cases, we observed that amyloid-beta is a biomarker of cardiovascular aging and of cardiovascular disease prognosis."

Currently, one’s risk of having a heart attack is measured via the GRACE score, which factors in a patient’s age, heart rate and pulse, kidney function, blood pressure and other elevated biomarkers. Given the  new findings on amyloid-beta proteins however, the researchers now hope that measuring for levels of the protein may also be factored into the GRACE score. 

To this end, Stellos and colleagues will now focus on creating clinical trials to further understand whether amyloid-beta levels can really be used tdetermine one’s risk of a heart attack or even death, as well as ways to reduce amyloid-beta levels in the blood. Stellos said, “Measuring amyloid-beta reclassified a large proportion of patients who had a heart attack in the correct risk categories over an established guideline-suggested risk score in independent clinical studies...If blood-based amyloid-beta predicts death in patients with heart disease, does it make a therapeutic target? Our next step is to investigate this."


Sources: News Medical, El Sevier and Medical Xpress

About the Author
  • Science writer with keen interests in technology and behavioral biology. Her current focus is on the interplay between these fields to create meaningful interactions, applications and environments.
You May Also Like
AUG 10, 2020
Cardiology
Can Statins be Used to Treat Strokes?
AUG 10, 2020
Can Statins be Used to Treat Strokes?
When a blood clot forms in an artery that supplies the brain with oxygen, obstructing it, a stroke can occur. Strokes ca ...
OCT 06, 2020
Cardiology
A New Heart Drug Taken from a Yellow Dye
OCT 06, 2020
A New Heart Drug Taken from a Yellow Dye
Cardiovascular disease is an ever-present issue in the modern world.  One of the most unfortunate cardiovascular ev ...
OCT 22, 2020
Cardiology
Using Liposomes to Deliver Repair Packages to the Heart
OCT 22, 2020
Using Liposomes to Deliver Repair Packages to the Heart
The secret to any successful drug is not just its ability to treat a disease but its ability to target the disease exclu ...
OCT 27, 2020
Cardiology
Boron Could Prevent Myocardial Fibrosis and Assist in Recovery
OCT 27, 2020
Boron Could Prevent Myocardial Fibrosis and Assist in Recovery
When you pass by the nutrition section at the local grocery store, there is a chance you’ll come across row upon r ...
NOV 05, 2020
Cardiology
Investigating Platelet-Derived Extracellular Vesicles in Blood Clotting
NOV 05, 2020
Investigating Platelet-Derived Extracellular Vesicles in Blood Clotting
In our bodies, there are millions of signals and packages being sent and received every second. In the past several deca ...
DEC 02, 2020
Cardiology
High Blood Pressure May Raise Brain Damage Risk
DEC 02, 2020
High Blood Pressure May Raise Brain Damage Risk
Researchers used data from over 30,000 people in this study, which included MRI and blood pressure information.
Loading Comments...