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Plasma levels of urotensin II are increased in patients with three-vessel coronary artery disease and left ventricular dysfunction


We have recently shown that the plasma levels of urotensin II (U-II), a highly potent vasoactive peptide, are increased in patients with reduced left ventricular function during coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery [1]. The present study was thus designed to confirm whether the plasma levels of this peptide are indeed related to the severity of coronary artery disease and accompanying variations in left ventricular filling pressures.

Material and methods

Twenty-six consecutive patients (age: 58 ± 11 years) were examined during routine right heart catheriza-tion. Patients were grouped according to the angiographic coronary status at hospital admission into a one-vessel CAD group (CAD-1; n = 13) and a three-vessel CAD group (CAD-3; n = 13). Patients were examined after 30 min supine rest. Mixed venous plasma levels of U-II were determined by EIA. Data are presented as mean ± SD; statistical analyses were performed by ANOVA.


Both groups were comparable regarding risk factors for CAD and a history of previous myocardial infarction. No group differences were observed in cardiac output, mean arterial blood pressure, heart rate, and central venous pressure. U-II plasma levels and pulmonary artery pressures are presented in Table 1.

Table 1


Extending previous observations in patients during CABG surgery, these findings suggest that the plasma levels of U-II in humans with CAD are related to left ventricular filling pressures and, hence, left ventricular diastolic dysfunction, further supporting a role of urotensin II in heart failure.


  1. Heringlake M, Eleftheriadis S, Bahlmann L, Klaus S, Eichler W, Schumacher J, Heinzinger M, Kraatz E, Schmucker P: The relationship between plasma urotensin II (hU-II) and pulmonary artery occlusion pressure during cardiac surgery: further evidence, that hU-II is influenced by cardiac filling pressures [abstract]. Crit Care 2002, 6(suppl 1):P146. 10.1186/cc1603

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Heringlake, M., Kox, T., Uzun, O. et al. Plasma levels of urotensin II are increased in patients with three-vessel coronary artery disease and left ventricular dysfunction. Crit Care 7, P203 (2003).

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  • Plasma Level
  • Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting
  • Diastolic Dysfunction
  • Central Venous Pressure
  • Pulmonary Artery Pressure