Author Interviews, Columbia, Heart Disease, Lipids / 13.09.2017 Interview with: Dr. Jay Edelberg MD, PhD VP Head of Cardiovascular Development and Head Global Cardiovascular Medical Affairs Sanofi What should readers take away from the data that Sanofi and Regeneron is presenting at ESC Congress 2017?    Response: This year at European Society of Cardiology (ESC,) we are pleased to present analyses that further demonstrate additional efficacy and tolerability of Praluent (alirocumab). While statins remain the first-line treatment, Praluent has shown a consistent benefit as an additional therapy to high-intensity statins in patients with clinical atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) and/or heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (HeFH), allowing many patients to achieve low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels previously considered unattainable in this patient population. Our data further emphasize the need for additional cholesterol-lowering options in these high cardiovascular (CV) risk patient populations, including individuals living with diabetes  (more…)
AstraZeneca, Author Interviews, Eli Lilly, Merck / 07.09.2017 Interview with: Dragana Radovanovic, MD  Head of AMIS Plus Data Center Hirschengraben Zürich What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: What we know so far? When a woman suffers a heart attack she is older, has consequently more cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension, has more comorbidities, is less likely to receive the same therapies and more likely to die in hospital. Furthermore, we know from many hospital statistics and administrative data bases that in-hospital mortality of acute myocardial infarction patients has been on the decrease from 1970 to the early 2000’s. We then wanted to know what the situation looks like in Switzerland and therefore analyzed in-hospital mortality over the last 20 years with regard to gender, age and therapies. For this study we used the data of the nationwide AMIS Plus registry (Acute Myocardial Infarction in Switzerland) which exists since 1997 and continuously prospectively collects clinical data of patients hospitalized with acute myocardial infarction. We have found that during the last 20 years (from 1997 to the end of 2016) in-hospital mortality of patients with acute myocardial infarction in Switzerland has halved. Although in-hospital mortality was consistently higher in women, overall age-adjusted mortality has decreased more prominently in women compared to men. Especially in patients aged below 60 years a significant decrease in in-hospital mortality was observed in women but not in men. (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease / 07.09.2017 Interview with: Nassir F. Marrouche, MD Professor, Internal Medicine Cardiology University of Utah What is the background for this study? Response: Study the effectiveness of catheter ablation of Atrial Fibrillation in patients with heart failure in improving hard primary endpoints of mortality and heart failure progression when compared to conventional standard treatment (more…)
Author Interviews, Boehringer Ingelheim, Heart Disease, PAD / 03.09.2017 Interview with: John Eikelboom MBBS Associate Professor, Division of Hematology & Thromboembolism Department of Medicine Canada Research Chair in Cardiovascular Medicine Canadian Institutes for Health Research McMaster University What is the background for this study? Response: Cardiovascular disease affects 1 in 25 persons around the world and a total of more than 300 million individuals. Thrombus formation at the site of a ruptured atherosclerotic plaque is the commonest mechanism of myocardial infarction and ischemic stroke in patients with cardiovascular disease. Aspirin is effective for the prevention of these complications but reduces the risk by only 19% during long term therapy. Rivaroxaban has previously been tested in the ATLAS ACS-2 TIMI 51 trial at doses of 2.5 mg twice daily or 5 mg twice daily on top of background antiplatelet therapy and has been shown to reduce major adverse cardiovascular events as well as mortality. We tested these same doses of rivaroxaban for the prevention of cardiovascular death, stroke or myocardial infarction in patients with stable cardiovascular disease. (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Lipids / 03.09.2017 Interview with: Dr Rahul Potluri Senior author and founder of the ACALM Study Unit Aston Medical School Aston University Birmingham, UK What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The links between hyperlipidaemia and cancer has been exciting scientists in recent years.  We have previously shown an association with breast cancer and hyperlipidaemia using a cross-sectional dataset in 2014. In 2016 we showed that in patients with the four main cancers in the UK (namely Breast, Lung, Colon and Prostate) that the presence of hyperlipidaemia improved the long term mortality and prognosis of these patients.  In this study utilising a big data, longitudinal study methodology, we looked at 16043 healthy women above the age of 40 with hyperlipidaemia and compared these to an age and gender matched control sample of 16043 healthy women without high cholesterol. We then followed up these patients and found that subsequent breast cancer rates in the women with hyperlipidaemia were 45% lower. Subsequent mortality in those patients who developed breast cancer was also 40% lower in the hyperlipidaemia group compared to the non-hyperlipidaemia controlled sample. (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Nutrition / 02.09.2017 Interview with: Dr. Mahshid Dehghan, PhD Investigator- Nutrition Epidemiology Program Population Health Research Institute Senior Research Associate – Department of Medicine McMaster University What is the background for this study? Response: For decades, dietary guidelines have largely focused on reducing total fat and saturated fat intake based on the idea that reducing fat consumption should reduce the risk of CVD. But this did not take into account what nutrients replace saturated fats in the diet. Given that carbohydrates are relatively inexpensive, reducing fats (especially saturated fat) is often accompanied by increased carbohydrate consumption. This approach continues to influence health policy today. The guidelines were developed some 4 decades back mainly using data from some Western countries (such as Finland) where fat and saturated fat intakes were very high (eg total fat intake was >40% of caloric intake and saturated fats was >20% of caloric intake). It is not clear whether the harms seen at such high levels applies to current global intakes or countries outside North America and Europe where fat intakes are much lower. The PURE (Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology) study is a large international cohort study of more than 157,000 people aged 35 to 70 years from 18 low-income, middle-income, and high-income countries on 5 continents. In this study, 135,335 individuals with dietary information and without cardiovascular disease at baseline were included in the study. Standardized questionnaires were used to collect information about demographics, socio-economic factors, lifestyle behaviors, health history and medication use. Standardized case-report forms were used to record data on major cardiovascular events and mortality during follow-up, which were adjudicated centrally in each country by trained physicians using standard definitions. The participants were followed-up for 7.5 years, during which time 4784 major cardiovascular events and 5796 deaths were recorded. (more…)