Background: Epidemiological evidence has shown that serum N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) concentrations, a diagnostic biomarker for heart failure, are positively associated with cardiovascular risk. Since NT-proBNP in serum is excreted in urine, it is hypothesized that urinary NT-proBNP concentrations are correlated with serum concentrations and linked with cardiovascular risk in the general population. Methods: A total of 3060 community-dwelling residents aged ≥ 40 years without history of cardiovascular disease (CVD) were followed up for a median of 8.3 years (2007–2015). Serum and urinary concentrations of NT-proBNP at baseline were compared. The hazard ratios (HRs) and their 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for the association between NT-proBNP concentrations and the risk of developing CVD were computed using the Cox proportional hazards model. Results: The median values (interquartile ranges) of serum and urinary NT-proBNP concentrations at baseline were 56 (32–104) pg/mL and 20 (18–25) pg/mL, respectively. There was a strong quadratic correlation between the serum and urinary concentrations of NT-proBNP (coefficient of determination [R2] = 0.72): urinary concentrations of 20, 27, and 43 pg/mL were equivalent to serum concentrations of 55, 125, and 300 pg/mL, respectively. During the follow-up period, 170 subjects developed CVD. The age- and sex-adjusted risk of CVD increased significantly with higher urinary NT-proBNP levels (P for trend < 0.001). This association remained significant after adjustment for traditional cardiovascular risk factors (P for trend = 0.009). The multivariable-adjusted risk of developing CVD almost doubled in subjects with urinary NT-proBNP of ≥ 43 pg/mL as compared to those with urinary NT-proBNP of ≤ 19 pg/mL (HR 2.07, 95% CI 1.20–3.56). Conclusions: The present study demonstrated that urinary NT-proBNP concentrations were well-correlated with serum concentrations and were positively associated with cardiovascular risk. Given that urine sampling is noninvasive and does not require specially trained personnel, urinary NT-proBNP concentrations have the potential to be an easy and useful biomarker for detecting people at higher cardiovascular risk.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health