Systemic inflammatory response following acute myocardial infarction

J Geriatr Cardiol. 2015 May;12(3):305-12. doi: 10.11909/j.issn.1671-5411.2015.03.020.


Acute cardiomyocyte necrosis in the infarcted heart generates damage-associated molecular patterns, activating complement and toll-like receptor/interleukin-1 signaling, and triggering an intense inflammatory response. Inflammasomes also recognize danger signals and mediate sterile inflammatory response following acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Inflammatory response serves to repair the heart, but excessive inflammation leads to adverse left ventricular remodeling and heart failure. In addition to local inflammation, profound systemic inflammation response has been documented in patients with AMI, which includes elevation of circulating inflammatory cytokines, chemokines and cell adhesion molecules, and activation of peripheral leukocytes and platelets. The excessive inflammatory response could be caused by a deregulated immune system. AMI is also associated with bone marrow activation and spleen monocytopoiesis, which sustains a continuous supply of monocytes at the site of inflammation. Accumulating evidence has shown that systemic inflammation aggravates atherosclerosis and markers for systemic inflammation are predictors of adverse clinical outcomes (such as death, recurrent myocardial infarction, and heart failure) in patients with AMI.

Keywords: Acute myocardial infarction; Inflammatory markers; Leukocytes; Systemic inflammatory response.

Publication types

  • Review