Novel plasma biomarkers predicting biventricular involvement in arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy

Am Heart J. 2022 Feb;244:66-76. doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2021.10.187. Epub 2021 Oct 29.


Background: Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) is an inherited heart muscle disease characterized by fibrofatty replacement of the myocardium and ventricular arrhythmias. Biventricular involvement in ARVC may lead to heart failure. This study aimed to investigate the role of plasma biomarkers soluble (s)ST2, Galectin-3 (Gal-3) and GDF-15 in predicting biventricular involvement and adverse outcomes in ARVC.

Methods and results: ARVC patients from 2 independent cohorts, were studied. The Bejing (Chinese) cohort (n = 108) was the discovery cohort, whereas the Zurich (Swiss) cohort (n = 47) served as validation. All patients had a definite ARVC diagnosis at time of blood withdrawal. Biomarkers were independently correlated with NT-proBNP and left ventricular (LV)-function. ARVC patients with LV involvement had higher levels of sST2 and GDF-15 as compared to controls and patients with isolated right ventricle (RV) involvement. sST2 and GDF-15 were significantly correlated with late gadolinium enhancement in CMR and with adverse heart failure outcomes. Gal-3 was elevated in ARVC patients with and without LV involvement. The combined use of the three biomarkers (sST2, GDF-15 and NT-proBNP) showed the best performance in predicting LV involvement in both cohorts. Plasma drawn from the coronary arteries and coronary sinus indicated a transmyocardial elevation of sST2, but no transmyocardial gradient of GDF-15. After heart transplantation, both sST2 and GDF-15 returned to near-normal levels.

Conclusion: Our study showed that sST2 and GDF-15 may predict biventricular involvement in ARVC. The combined use of sST2, GDF-15 and NT-proBNP showed the best prediction of biventricular involvement in ARVC.

Keywords: Arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy; Biomarker; Heart failure; Right ventricular; Risk stratification.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Dysplasia* / complications
  • Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Dysplasia* / diagnosis
  • Biomarkers
  • Contrast Media
  • Gadolinium
  • Heart Ventricles / diagnostic imaging
  • Humans


  • Biomarkers
  • Contrast Media
  • Gadolinium