Cardiovascular Biomarker Midregional Proatrial Natriuretic Peptide During and After Preeclamptic Pregnancies
Preeclampsia is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Midregional proatrial natriuretic peptide (MR-proANP), a precursor of the atrial natriuretic peptide, is a biomarker for cardiovascular disease. We obtained plasma from 184 pregnant women in gestational weeks 24 to 42 (normotensive pregnancies: n=77, preeclampsia: n=107), from 25 of these women at 5 to 8 years after index pregnancy (normotensive pregnancies: n=11, preeclampsia: n=14), and from 49 normotensive, nonpregnant women and analyzed them by immunoassay for MR-proANP. To investigate potential sources, placental and decidual atrial natriuretic peptide mRNA expression levels were analyzed by quantitative real-time PCR in 21 normotensive and 23 preeclamptic pregnancies, as well as in human heart and kidney samples. For further confirmation, we measured circulating MR-proANP and performed expression studies in a transgenic rat model for preeclampsia. MR-proANP was significantly elevated in maternal plasma in preeclampsia compared with normotensive pregnancies (135 versus 56 pmol/L; P<0.001). However, 5 to 8 years after pregnancy, there was no difference (formerly preeclamptic women versus formerly normotensive in pregnancy: 53 versus 49 pmol/L; P=0.5). Our preeclamptic rat model confirmed the acute MR-proANP differences between preeclamptic and normotensive pregnancies (10.9±1.9 versus 4.3±0.3 pmol/L; P=0.05). Atrial natriuretic peptide expression was high in the heart but negligible in the uteroplacental unit in both normotensive humans and rats, whereas expression in maternal and fetal hearts in the preeclamptic rats was significantly increased, compared with controls. MR-proANP is a serviceable biomarker in preeclampsia, both in humans and a rat model, probably reflecting cardiovascular hemodynamic stress.
- biological marker
- cardiovascular disease
- midregional proatrial natriuretic peptide
- transgenic rats
- Received October 10, 2011.
- Revision received November 11, 2011.
- Accepted November 22, 2011.
- © 2011 American Heart Association, Inc.