Background: The early prediction of acute kidney injury (AKI) can facilitate timely intervention and prevent complications. We aimed to understand the predictive value of urinary liver-type fatty-acid binding protein (L-FABP) levels on admission to medical (non-surgical) cardiac intensive care units (CICUs) for AKI, both independently and in combination with serum N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) levels.
Methods: We prospectively investigated the predictive value of L-FABP and NT-proBNP for AKI in a large, heterogeneous cohort of patients treated in medical CICUs. Baseline urinary L-FABP and serum NT-proBNP were measured on admission. AKI was diagnosed according to the Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes criteria. We studied 1273 patients (mean age, 68 years), among whom 46% had acute coronary syndromes, 38% had acute decompensated heart failure, 5% had arrhythmia, 3% had pulmonary hypertension, 2% had acute aortic syndrome, 2% had infective endocarditis, and 1% had Takotsubo cardiomyopathy.
Results: Urinary L-FABP levels correlated with serum NT-proBNP levels (r = 0.17, p < 0.0001). AKI occurred in 224 patients (17.6%), including 48 patients with stage 2 or 3 disease. Patients who developed AKI had higher one-week and 6-month mortality than those who did not develop AKI (p = 0.0002 and p = 0.003, respectively). In the multivariate logistic analysis, both L-FABP (p < 0.0001) and NT-proBNP (p = 0.006) were independently associated with the development of AKI. Adding L-FABP and NT-proBNP to a baseline model that included established risk factors further improved reclassification (p < 0.001) and discrimination (p < 0.01) beyond that of the baseline model or any single biomarker individually.
Conclusions: Urinary L-FABP and serum NT-proBNP levels on admission are independent predictors of AKI, and when used in combination, improve early prediction of AKI in patients hospitalized at medical CICUs.
Keywords: Acute kidney injury; Liver-type fatty-acid binding protein; Medical cardiac intensive care units; N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide.