Aims: The prognostic significance of N-terminal pro-A-type (NT-proANP) and pro-B-type natriuretic peptides (NT-proBNP) is not well documented in population-based prospective studies. We, therefore, studied if both NT-proANP and NT-proBNP are predictive for overall death, cardiovascular events, and atrial fibrillation (AF) among middle-aged men without heart failure or AF at baseline.
Methods and results: Plasma NT-proANP and NT-proBNP were measured in a representative population-based sample of 905 men (age 46-65 years) from eastern Finland. There were 110 deaths [58 cardiovascular and 40 coronary heart disease (CHD)] and 59 cases of AF during a follow-up of 10 years. The multivariable adjusted risk for overall was 1.35-fold (95% CI 1.15-1.57) and 1.52-fold (95% CI 1.21-1.91) for CHD death for each SD (160.8 pmol/L) increment in NT-proANP. The respective risks were 1.26-fold (95% CI 1.12-1.42) and 1.44-fold (95% CI 1.22-1.60) for each SD (58.9 pmol/L) increment in NT-proBNP. The adjusted risks for future AF were 1.46 (P<0.001) and 1.72-fold (P<0.001) for each SD increment in NT-proANP and NT-proBNP, respectively.
Conclusion: The main finding of the present study is that NT-proANP and NT-proBNP are strong predictors of death from cardiovascular and other causes including AF. These natriuretic peptides add to the prognostic value of conventional risk factors and provide a non-invasive measure for identifying men with high risk of death and its co-morbidities.