Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Gene Test Determines Risk Of Heart Surgery Complications

Date:
May 7, 2009
Source:
Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres
Summary:
Genetic differences can explain why some patients undergoing heart surgery later experience shock and kidney complications, according to a new study. The results indicate that performing a genetic test on patients before they have surgery can help guide treatment after they leave the operating room.

Genetic differences can explain why some patients undergoing heart surgery later experience shock and kidney complications, according to a study by researchers at the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, the Max-Delbrück-Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC) Berlin-Buch in Germany and the Austin Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. The results indicate that performing a genetic test on patients before they have surgery can help guide treatment after they leave the operating room.

The researchers studied the gene that encodes the enzyme catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT). Certain variants of the COMT gene have long been suspected to play a role in shock and kidney failure in patients following heart surgery. The COMT enzyme is involved in metabolizing norepinephrine (noradrenalin), a drug that is given to patients post-surgery to stimulate their blood flow and to normalize their blood pressure.

Professor Duska Dragun, MD, Charité, Professor Friedrich Luft, MD (Experimental and Clinical Research Center , MDC) and Dr. Wolf-Hagen Schunck (MDC) studied the COMT gene in 260 patients who underwent heart bypass surgery. They were able to show that the genetic variant they call "LL" can lower the activity of the COMT enzyme. As a result, LL patients are more likely to develop shock and kidney failure.

In addition, LL patients who experience shock do not respond very well to treatment with norepinephrine. Since the activity of the COMT enzyme is lowered in LL patients, norepinephrine cannot fully be metabolized. As a result, too much norepinephrine remains in the body and the drug is no longer effective.

Therefore, the researchers suggest that "perhaps, more suitable hemodynamics could be achieved in LL patients were they given vasopressin rather than noradrenaline (norepinephrine) and acute kidney injury might be attenuated by avoidance of cardiopulmonary bypass and nephrotoxic medication." Larger clinical trials are necessary to show whether patients need to undergo genetic testing prior to heart surgery to determine their risk for shock and kidney failure.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Anja Haase-Fielitz et al. Decreased Catecholamine Degradation Associates with Shock and Kidney Injury after Cardiac Surgery. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, DOI: 10.1681/ASN.2008080915

Cite This Page:

Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres. "Gene Test Determines Risk Of Heart Surgery Complications." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 May 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090430172944.htm>.
Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres. (2009, May 7). Gene Test Determines Risk Of Heart Surgery Complications. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090430172944.htm
Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres. "Gene Test Determines Risk Of Heart Surgery Complications." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090430172944.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) — West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) — A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) — Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) — Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins