Background - Brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) and norepinephrine (NE) are strongly related to severity of and are independent predictors of outcome in heart failure. The long-term effects of angiotensin receptor blockers on BNP and NE in heart failure patients are not known. Methods and Results - Both BNP and NE were measured in 4284 patients randomized to valsartan or placebo in the Valsartan Heart Failure Trial (Val-HeFT) at baseline and 4, 12, and 24 months after randomization. The effects of valsartan were tested by ANCOVA, controlling for baseline values and concomitant ACE inhibitors and/or β-blockers. BNP and NE concentrations were similar at baseline in the 2 groups and were decreased by valsartan starting at 4 months and up to 24 months. BNP increased over time in the placebo group. At the end point, least-squares mean (±SEM) BNP increased from baseline by 23±5 pg/mL in the placebo group (n=1979) but decreased by 21±5 pg/mL (n=1940) in the valsartan group (P<0.0001). NE increased by 41±6 pg/mL (n=1979) and 12±6 pg/mL (n=1941) for placebo and valsartan, respectively (P=0.0003). Concomitant therapy with both ACE inhibitors and β-blockers significantly reduced the effect of valsartan on BNP but not on NE (P for interaction =0.0223 and 0.2289, respectively). Conclusions - In Val-HeFT, the largest neurohormone study in patients with symptomatic chronic heart failure, BNP and NE rose over time in the placebo group. Valsartan caused sustained reduction in BNP and attenuated the increase in NE over the course of the study. These neurohormone effects of valsartan are consistent with the clinical benefits reported in Val-HeFT.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||5|
|State||Published - Nov 5 2002|
- Heart failure
- Natriuretic peptides