Metabolomics in heart failure

Coordinator:    Prof. Dr. Hugo A. Katus                                                                       Dr. Jens Fuhrmann
Institution: Abteilung Innere Medizin III, Uniklink Heidelberg                                   Metanomics GmbH, Berlin
Chronic Heart Failure is a highly frequent disease associated with high morbidity and mortality. Therefore there is a strong need for early assessment of heart failure patients to prevent further disease progression. Clinical diagnosis and risk assessment is presently based on clinical symptoms and verification of reduced cardiac output. Very recently new biomarkers play a significant role in the clinical management of heart failure patients. Metabolic profiling may represent a complementary approach in this field, because alterations in genetic activity are not easy detectable in cardiac tissues. In contrast their effects reflected in the metabolom are easily accessible by highly sensitive analytic techniques. Against this background Cardiologists from University Hospital of Heidelberg have established a research alliance with the company metanomics GmbH, which is specialized on metabolomics of diseases which are highly relevant in western industrialized countries. In subproject 1 of this joint initiative cardiologists from Heidelberg provide biomaterial (serum) from excellently characterized Heart Failure patients and metabomics task is metabolomic profiling and its highly sophisticated bioinformatics analysis.

The first aim is the large screen of metabolites which are differentially regulated in heart failure compared to a control group of healthy persons. In a subcohort of heart failure patients as well as in healthy probands the metabolic reaction on acute physical stress will be evaluated in order to assess the severity of heart failure in the metabolom. Most significant marker shall be patented and further developed to clinical applicable assays. Myocardial hypertrophy is an important risk indicator for development of systolic or diastolic heart failure. Early identification of such patients would be of major clinical importance because of the possibility to stop or delay a potential progression to a manifest heart failure.

The second specific aim is to perform a large metabolic screen in patients with myocardial hypertrophy caused by a hypertrophic heart disease-

Third aim is to compare genetic data of heart failure patients with their metabolomic data to build up a comprehensive combined risk score for heart failure.


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