Sharma A, Stevens SR, Lucas J, Fiuzat M, Adams KF, Whellan DJ,
Donahue MP, Kitzman DW, Piña IL, Zannad F, Kraus WE, O’Connor
CM, Felker GM
JACC Heart Fail. 2017 Oct;5(10):724-734
OBJECTIVES: This study sought to determine the relationship between growth
differentiation factor (GDF)-15 and clinical outcomes in ambulatory patients with
heart failure and reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF).
BACKGROUND: The prognostic utility of GDF-15, a member of the transforming growth
factor-β cytokine family, among patients with HF is unclear.
METHODS: We assessed GDF-15 levels in 910 patients enrolled in the HF-ACTION
(Heart Failure: A Controlled Trial Investigating Outcomes of Exercise Training)
trial, a randomized clinical trial of exercise training in patients with HFrEF.
Median follow-up was 30 months. Cox proportional hazard models assessed the
relationships between GDF-15 and clinical outcomes.
RESULTS: The median GDF-15 concentration was 1,596 pg/ml. Patients in the highest
tertile of GDF-15 were older and had measurements of more severe HF (higher
N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide [NT-proBNP] concentrations and lower
peak oxygen uptake on cardiopulmonary exercise testing [CPX]). GDF-15 therapy was
a significant predictor of all-cause death (unadjusted hazard ratio [HR]: 2.03
when GDF-15 was doubled; p < 0.0001). This association persisted after adjustment
for demographic and clinical and biomarkers including high sensitivity troponin T
(hs-TnT) and NT-proBNP (HR: 1.30 per doubling of GDF-15; p = 0.029). GDF-15 did
not improve discrimination (as measured by changes in c-statistics and
the integrated discrimination improvement) in addition to baseline variables,
including hs-TnT and NT-proBNP or variables found in CPX testing.
CONCLUSIONS: In demographically diverse, well-managed patients with HFrEF, GDF-15
therapy provided independent prognostic information in addition to established
predictors of outcomes. These data support a possible role for GDF-15 in the risk
stratification of patients with chronic HFrEF. (Heart Failure: A Controlled Trial
Investigating Outcomes of Exercise Training [HF-ACTION]; NCT00047437)