Associations Between Blood Biomarkers, Cardiac Function, and Adverse Outcome in a Young Fontan Cohort.

van den Bosch E; Bossers SSM; Kamphuis VP; Boersma E; Breur JMPJ; Kapusta L; Bartelds B; Roest AAW; Kuipers IM; Blom NA; Koopman LP; Helbing WA;

Journal of the American Heart Association [J Am Heart Assoc] 2021 Feb; Vol. 10 (5), pp. e015022. Date of Electronic Publication: 2021 Feb 24.

Background Patients who have undergone the Fontan procedure are at high risk of circulatory failure. In an exploratory analysis we aimed to determine the prognostic value of blood biomarkers in a young cohort who have undergone the Fontan procedure.
Methods and Results In multicenter prospective studies patients who have undergone the Fontan procedure underwent blood sampling, cardiopulmonary exercise testing, and stress cardiac magnetic resonance imaging. Several biomarkers including NT-proBNP (N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide), GDF-15 (growth differentiation factor 15), Gal-3 (galectin-3), ST2 (suppression of tumorigenicity 2), DLK-1 (protein delta homolog 1), FABP-4 (fatty acid-binding protein 4), IGFBP-1 (insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 1), IGFBP-7, MMP-2 (matrix metalloproteinase 2), and vWF (von Willebrand factor) were assessed in blood at 9.6 (7.1-12.1) years after Fontan completion. After this baseline study measurement, follow-up information was collected on the incidence of adverse cardiac events, including cardiac death, out of hospital cardiac arrest, heart transplantation (listing), cardiac reintervention (severe events), hospitalization, and cardioversion/ablation for arrhythmias was collected and the relation with blood biomarkers was assessed by Cox proportional hazard analyses. The correlation between biomarkers and other clinical parameters was evaluated. We included 133 patients who have undergone the Fontan procedure, median age 13.2 (25th, 75th percentile 10.4-15.9) years, median age at Fontan 3.2 (2.5-3.9) years. After a median follow-up of 6.2 (4.9-6.9) years, 36 (27.1%) patients experienced an event of whom 13 (9.8%) had a severe event. NT-proBNP was associated with (all) events during follow-up and remained predictive after correction for age, sex, and dominant ventricle (hazard ratio, 1.89; CI, 1.32-2.68). The severe event-free survival was better in patients with low levels of GDF-15 ( P =0.005) and vWF ( P =0.008) and high levels of DLK-1 ( P =0.041). There was a positive correlation (β=0.33, P =0.003) between DLK-1 and stress cardiac magnetic resonance imaging functional reserve.
Conclusions NT-proBNP, GDF-15, vWF, DLK-1, ST-2 FABP-4, and IGFBP-7 levels relate to long-term outcome in young patients who have undergone the Fontan procedure.