PloS one

Soluble CD40 Ligand in Aspirin-Treated Patients Undergoing Cardiac Catheterization.

PMID 26237513


Plasma soluble CD40 ligand (sCD40L) is mainly generated by cleavage of CD40L from the surface of activated platelets, and therefore considered a platelet activation marker. Although the predictive value of sCD40L for ischemic events has been demonstrated in patients with acute coronary syndromes (ACS), studies on the association of sCD40L with cardiovascular outcomes in lower risk populations yielded heterogeneous results. We therefore sought to investigate factors influencing sCD40L levels, and the predictive value of sCD40L for long-term ischemic events in unselected, aspirin-treated patients undergoing cardiac catheterization. sCD40L was determined by a commercially available enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in 682 consecutive patients undergoing cardiac catheterization. Two-year follow-up data were obtained from 562 patients. Dual antiplatelet therapy with aspirin and clopidogrel was associated with significantly lower levels of sCD40L and lower platelet surface expressions of P-selectin and activated GPIIb/IIIa compared to aspirin monotherapy (all p≤0.01). Hypertension was linked to lower plasma concentrations of sCD40L, whereas female sex, increasing high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, and hematocrit were associated with higher sCD40L concentrations (all p<0.05). sCD40L levels were similar in patients without and with the primary endpoint in the overall study population (p = 0.4). Likewise, sCD40L levels did not differ significantly between patients without and with the secondary endpoints (both p≥0.4). Similar results were obtained when only patients with angiographically-proven coronary artery disease (n = 459), stent implantation (n = 205) or ACS (n = 125) were analyzed. The adjustment for differences in patient characteristics by multivariate regression analyses did not change the results. ROC curve analyses did not reveal cut-off values for sCD40L for the prediction of the primary or secondary endpoints. In conclusion, plasma sCD40L levels are reduced by antiplatelet therapy with clopidogrel, but not associated with long-term ischemic outcomes in unselected consecutive aspirin-treated patients undergoing cardiac catheterization.