Emerging biomarkers in heart failure and cardiac cachexia

Int J Mol Sci. 2014 Dec 22;15(12):23878-96. doi: 10.3390/ijms151223878.


Biomarkers are objective tools with an important role for diagnosis, prognosis and therapy optimization in patients with heart failure (HF). To date, natriuretic peptides are closest to optimal biomarker standards for clinical implications in HF. Therefore, the efforts to identify and test new biomarkers in HF are reasonable and justified. Along the natural history of HF, cardiac cachexia may develop, and once at this stage, patient performance and prognosis is particularly poor. For these reasons, numerous biomarkers reflecting hormonal, inflammatory and oxidative stress pathways have been investigated, but only a few convey relevant information. The complex pathophysiology of HF appears far too complex to be embraced by a single biomarker; thus, a combined approach appears reasonable. With these considerations, we have reviewed the recent developments in the field to highlight key candidates with diagnostic, prognostic and therapy optimization properties, either alone or in combination.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Cachexia / blood
  • Cachexia / diagnosis
  • Cachexia / etiology
  • Cachexia / metabolism*
  • Heart Failure / blood
  • Heart Failure / diagnosis
  • Heart Failure / etiology
  • Heart Failure / metabolism*
  • Humans


  • Biomarkers