Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Blood test identifies people at risk for heart attack that other tests miss

Date:
April 20, 2010
Source:
Oregon Health & Science University
Summary:
A simple blood test can identify people who are at risk for a heart attack, including thousands who don't have high cholesterol. The new test measures gamma-prime fibrinogen, a component of the blood's clotting mechanism. Elevated levels indicate greater likelihood of a heart attack, even when other signs don't point to cardiovascular trouble, say researchers.

A simple blood test can identify people who are at risk for a heart attack, including thousands who don't have high cholesterol, according to researchers at Oregon Health & Science University.

The new test measures gamma-prime fibrinogen, a component of the blood's clotting mechanism. Elevated levels indicate greater likelihood of a heart attack, even when other signs don't point to cardiovascular trouble, says David H. Farrell, Ph.D., professor of pathology in the OHSU School of Medicine and a member of OHSU's Heart Research Center. The results were recently published in Clinical Chemistry.

"Half a million people suffer fatal heart attacks each year," Farrell says. "About 250,000 of the patients who die have normal cholesterol and some of the patients with normal cholesterol also have elevated levels of gamma-prime fibrinogen. We think this is another risk factor that we should test for."

Farrell and his team confirmed the effectiveness of the gamma-prime fibrinogen test by analyzing 3,400 blood samples from the landmark Framingham Heart Study, the oldest and most prestigious cardiovascular disease study in the world. In addition, OHSU's analysis of the Framingham samples found that patients with well-established heart attack risk factors, including cholesterol, high body mass index, smoking and diabetes also have elevated gamma-prime fibrinogen levels.

"We found that if your gamma-prime fibrinogen levels were in the top 25 percent, you had seven times greater odds of having coronary artery disease," Farrell says.

A small pilot study in 2002 gave OHSU researchers their first inkling that gamma-prime fibrinogen might be linked to heart disease. They obtained the Framingham samples -- which are rarely shared -- and proved the link. The next step is using the test at several hospitals and medical centers to demonstrate it works on a large scale.

"It will take some time to build consensus within the field of cardiology for this test," Farrell says. "The gamma-prime fibrinogen test would be used in conjunction with a cholesterol test to better predict who is likely to suffer a heart attack. Ultimately we are optimistic we can identify people who are at risk who didn't know they are at risk."

OHSU has filed a provisional patent application for a gamma-prime fibrinogen test. Farrell and his colleagues also have formed a company called Gamma Therapeutics, Inc. to mass-produce the assay. OHSU has a process in place to review and manage the individual and institutional conflicts of interest that may arise through its start-up companies.

The gamma-prime fibrinogen research was sponsored by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Oregon Health & Science University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. R.S. Lovely, S.C. Kazmierczak, J.M. Massaro, R.B. D'Agostino Sr., C.J. O'Donnell, and D.H. Farrell. γ′ Fibrinogen: Evaluation of a New Assay for Study of Associations with Cardiovascular Disease. Clin Chem, 56: 781

Cite This Page:

Oregon Health & Science University. "Blood test identifies people at risk for heart attack that other tests miss." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 April 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100419173006.htm>.
Oregon Health & Science University. (2010, April 20). Blood test identifies people at risk for heart attack that other tests miss. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100419173006.htm
Oregon Health & Science University. "Blood test identifies people at risk for heart attack that other tests miss." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100419173006.htm (accessed September 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) A study suggest antidepressants can kick in much sooner than previously thought. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) 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