Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

10. What biological variables are most influential in the development and clinical outcomes of heart disease and what can be don

Given that approximately 64 percent of women who died suddenly of CHD had no previous symptoms4 and that traditional risk factors and scores underestimate CHD risk in women, there is a need to identify unique markers for women at risk for CHD60.


( from 10 Report)

Tags (Keywords associated with the idea)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Early detection and correction of such variables as elevated cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes and cigarette smoking, can reduce atherosclerosis (the main cause of CHD) and improve outcomes. These are modifiable to some extent with changes in lifestyle, improved diet, exercise and smoking cessation. Psychosocial risk factors, such as low socioeconomic status, anxiety, and depression have also been linked to CHD and should be evaluated.

There are also biomarkers, biomediators, neurohormones, and surrogate markers which can signal CHD. Some of these can be modified, including


• neurohormones which are part of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system that directly impact angiotensin II and arginine vasopressin1, 61, 62

• markers of the inflammatory processes such as C-reactive protein which may be a useful predictor of CVD and correlates significantly with future risk of developing hypertension63, 64

• markers of heart failure such as B-type natriuretic peptide

Surrogate markers of atherosclerosis and CHD risk include left ventricular hypertrophy, intima-media arterial wall thickness, proteinuria and microalbuminuria, endothelial dysfunction, coronary calcification and anemia1, 62.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

Research shows that a variety of treatments – from lifestyle/behavioral changes, medications, and interventional treatments – can interrupt the progression of CHD. Further research is needed to demonstrate whether lifestyle and behavioral changes in women with known or suspected CHD can improve prognosis. Innovative approaches to care management that encourage changes in lifestyle should be considered. These include customized care management and the use of multidisciplinary teams of health practitioners who coordinate care for women at risk. Further research is needed to determine whether reducing or minimizing the novel biomarkers associated with CHD will result in lower mortality rates.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Susan M. Campbell, WomenHeart Scientific Advisory Council


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-3 net votes
5 up votes
8 down votes
Idea No. 759