News Round Up from AHA Scientific Sessions 2008 - November 12th

Abstract

Rivaroxaban Phase II Dose-Ranging Study Demonstrates Encouraging Response Rates In Treatment Of Acute Coronary Syndrome Patients
12 Nov 2008
Findings from the Phase II ATLAS ACS TIMI 46 study of rivaroxaban, a novel, investigational, oral anticoagulant, were presented today as a late-breaking clinical trial at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008 in New Orleans by C. Michael Gibson, M.D., director of the TIMI Data Coordinating Center, Harvard Medical School. Results from this Phase II study support advancing rivaroxaban into a pivotal Phase III trial for the secondary prevention of acute coronary syndrome (ACS). Full news item

Loyola Study Finds Catheter Ablation Superior To Medication For Atrial Fibrillation
12 Nov 2008
Treating a common heart rhythm disorder by burning heart tissue with a catheter works dramatically better than drug treatments, a major international study has found.Full news item

S-Nitrosylation Of Cysteine 181 mimics Action Of Viagra-Like Drugs, Which Have Been Shown To Rescue Failing Hearts
12 Nov 2008
Taking a cue from the way drugs like Viagra put the biological brakes on a key enzyme involved in heart failure, scientists at Johns Hopkins have mapped out a key chemical step involved in blocking the enzyme. Full news item

Genetics For Personalized Coronary Heart Disease Treatment
12 Nov 2008
Identifying a single, common variation in a person's genetic information improves prediction of his or her risk of a heart attack or other heart disease events and thus, choice of the best treatment accordingly, said researchers at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. Full news item

The Cardiovascular Benefits Of Music Are Similar To Those Found In Previous Study Of Laughter
12 Nov 2008
Listening to your favorite music may be good for your cardiovascular system. Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore have shown for the first time that the emotions aroused by joyful music have a healthy effect on blood vessel function. Full news item

Damage Inflicted During Cardiac Attacks More Widespread Than Previously Thought, MSU Researchers Find
12 Nov 2008
Cholesterol crystals released in the bloodstream during a cardiac attack or stroke can damage artery linings much further away from the site of the attack, leaving survivors at greater risk than previously thought. Full news item

Outcomes For Patients With Heart Failure Improved By Exercise
12 Nov 2008
Working out on a stationary bicycle or walking on a treadmill just 25 to 30 minutes most days of the week is enough to modestly lower risk of hospitalization or death for patients with heart failure, say researchers from Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI). Full news item

Health Risks For Large, Retired Athletes May Be Lowered By Staying Active
12 Nov 2008
Study highlights:

  • Retired NFL players have fewer heart disease risk factors overall, but higher cholesterol and glucose levels.
  • Physical activity may have prevented the development of higher rates of diabetes or greater amounts of atherosclerosis.
  • Since today's players are 50 percent larger than 25 years ago, further study is needed on whether current players are at greater risk for cardiovascular events or death, researchers said.

 

Full news item

Comparison Of Cell-Coated And Drug-Coated Stents
12 Nov 2008
Study highlights:

  • A stent that coats itself with the cells that line blood vessels is as effective as a drug-coated stent in preventing artery reblockage and blood clots for people with coronary artery disease.
  • Unlike drug-eluting stents, the new device requires only short-term antiplatelet therapy.
  • This stent is in use in many countries, but the Food and Drug Administration has not yet approved it for marketing in the United States.

 

Full news item

Artery Plaque In Obese Kids' Similar To Middle-Aged Adults
12 Nov 2008
Study highlights:

  • The plaque buildup in the neck arteries of obese children or those with high cholesterol is similar to levels in middle-aged adults.
  • Using ultrasound images, researchers equated the \"vascular age\" to be 45 years old in these children.
  • Obese children who have high triglycerides are the most likely to have prematurely aging arteries; these children should be treated as high risk for cardiovascular disease, researchers concluded.

 

Full news item

Higher Death Rates In Minority Children Waiting For Heart Transplants
12 Nov 2008
Study highlights:

  • Minority children on the waitlist for a heart transplant have a greater risk of dying than white children do.
  • Socioeconomic factors explain only a small fraction of this increased risk.
  • When all factors including race, area income and insurance were simultaneously considered, children with Medicaid insurance were 20 percent more likely to die while awaiting transplant.

 

Full news item

Risk Of Blood Clots Forming In Veins May Be Reduced By Flu Shots
12 Nov 2008
Flu shots may reduce the risk of blood clots forming in veins by 26 percent, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Full news item

Medtronic Data Presented At American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2008 Supports Utility Of Painless Pacing Therapies In ICD Patients
12 Nov 2008
New data presented today at Scientific Sessions 2008 from Medtronic (NYSE: MDT) shows that survival among patients with implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) treated only with anti-tachycardia pacing (ATP) was superior to patients who experienced at least one shock-treated episode, further demonstrating the clinical benefit of ATP. Additionally, the analysis evaluating more than 2,000 patients, found no link between inappropriate therapy and mortality, nor a causal relationship between ICD therapy (ATP or shock) and mortality. Full news item

New Study: A Common Class Of GI Medications Reduce Protection Against Heart Attack In Patients Taking Widely Prescribed Cardiovascular Drug
12 Nov 2008
Medco Health Solutions, Inc. (NYSE: MHS) presented a study at the 2008 Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association that showed an increased risk for major cardiovascular events in patients taking clopidogrel (the active ingredient in Plavix) and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) together. Full news item

Interferon Reduces, Eliminates Viral Infections In Heart Failure Patients
12 Nov 2008
Giving interferon to heart failure patients with evidence of a chronic viral infection safely eliminated two viruses from their systems and reduced levels of a third virus. Additionally, there were trends toward improved cardiac function and quality of life, but these did not reach significance at 24 weeks, researchers reported at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Results from the Effect of Subcutaneous Treatment with Interferon-Beta-1b over 24 weeks on Safety, Virus Elimination and Clinical Outcome in Patients with Chronic Viral Cardiomyopathy study were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. Full news item

Exercise Is Safe, Improves Outcomes For Heart Failure Patients
12 Nov 2008
Exercise training is safe in heart failure patients, does not significantly reduce hospitalization or death, but is associated with several improved clinical outcomes, even in those already receiving optimal medical care, researchers reported at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. The Heart Failure and A Controlled Trial Investigating Outcomes of Exercise Training (HF-ACTION) was presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. Full news item

Phase II Trial Of Experimental Anti Coagulant Reports Safety And Outcomes Data
12 Nov 2008
Researchers reported on a study of a new oral anti-clotting agent -- rivaroxaban -- designed to identify doses that would be safe to test in subsequent Phase III efficacy and safety trials. The results of ATLAS ACS-TIMI 46 were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Full news item

Tailored Drug Delivery Reduces Adverse Effects After PCI
12 Nov 2008
Individually tailored anti-clotting medication dosing significantly cut the rate of adverse events after non-emergent percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with stenting, researchers reported at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Results of the Tailored Clopidogrel Loading Dose According to Platelet Reactivity Monitoring to Prevent Stent Thrombosis study were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. Full news item

New Blood Test Better Identifies Heart Failure Patients In ER
12 Nov 2008
A new blood test identifies the sickest heart failure patients better than tests now used in emergency departments, researchers reported at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Results of the Mid-Regional pro-Adrenomedullin (proADM) versus BNP and NTproBNP as Prognosticator in Heart Failure Patients: Results of the BACH Multinational Trial were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. Full news item

Study Finds Folic Acid Not Cardioprotective, Though Safe
12 Nov 2008
Folic acid is safe -- but it lacks any cardiovascular benefits -- according to researchers presenting at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. The results from the Study of the Effectiveness of Additional Reductions in Cholesterol and Homocysteine (SEARCH), a 12,064-person, randomized study, were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. Full news item

Drug Eluting Stents Beat Bare Metal Stents In Diabetics
12 Nov 2008
Drug-eluting stents reduced the risk of revascularization, heart attack and death in diabetics as compared with bare-metal stents in the largest observational comparison, researchers reported at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. The results from The Drug-eluting and Bare Metal Stenting in Patients with Diabetes Mellitus: Results from the Mass-DAC Registry, were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. The study is simultaneously published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association. Full news itemm

Two Antioxidant Vitamins Don't Protect Against Heart Disease
12 Nov 2008
Vitamins E and C -- antioxidant supplements taken by many American adults -- don't protect against cardiovascular disease when taken individually, according to a long-term study of more than 14,000 male physicians presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Results of the Physician's Health Study II (PHS II) were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. The study was simultaneously published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Full news item

Statin Reduces Heart Attack, Stroke Rates In Patients With Normal Cholesterol But Elevated C-Reactive Protein
12 Nov 2008
New data from the landmark ATHENA trial showed that dronedarone significantly reduced the incidence and total duration of hospital stays among patients with atrial fibrillation/atrial flutter (AF/AFL). This post-hoc analysis was presented at the 2008 American Heart Association Scientific Sessions in New Orleans, Louisiana. Full news item

Prevention Of Coronary Heart Disease: New Findings On The Role Of Inflammation
12 Nov 2008
This year, about 450,000 Americans will die of coronary heart disease - the leading cause of death for both men and women. Although we have made great strides in preventing and treating heart disease, we continue to explore the complex mechanisms involved in cardiovascular disease, and we are eager to refine risk assessment tools and preventive strategies to reduce the incidence of heart attack and stroke. Full news item

A Gas To Treat Heart Failure
12 Nov 2008
At low concentrations, the toxic gas hydrogen sulfide protects the hearts of mice from heart failure, scientists at Emory University School of Medicine have found. Their findings, presented Nov. 11 at the American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions conference in New Orleans, suggest that doctors could use hydrogen sulfide to treat humans with heart failure. Full news item

Dronedarone (Multaq(R)) Reduced The Incidence And Duration Of Hospitalization In Patients With Atrial Fibrillation
12 Nov 2008
New data from the landmark ATHENA trial showed that dronedarone significantly reduced the incidence and total duration of hospital stays among patients with atrial fibrillation/atrial flutter (AF/AFL). This post-hoc analysis was presented at the 2008 American Heart Association Scientific Sessions in New Orleans, Louisiana. Full news item"