Background: Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), a novel biomarker of acute kidney injury, might play a role in the development of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD). We aimed to assess the association of circulating NGAL with CVD risk.
Materials and methods: Plasma NGAL concentrations were measured at baseline in 5275 participants in the PREVEND prospective study. Hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals [CI]) for CVD were estimated.
Results: After a median follow-up of 8.3 years, 338 participants developed first CVD events. Plasma NGAL was weakly to moderately correlated with several CVD risk markers. There was a non-linear relationship between NGAL and CVD risk. In analyses adjusted for established risk factors, the hazard ratio (95% CI) for CVD in a comparison of the top quartile versus bottom quartiles 1–2 of NGAL values was 1.35 (1.05–1.75; P = 0.022), which was abrogated after additional adjustment for other potential confounders (mainly attributed to high sensitivity C-reactive protein) 1.20 (0.92–1.57; P = 0.176). The association was considerably attenuated following further adjustment for renal function 1.05 (0.79–1.40; P = 0.745). The association between NGAL and CVD risk did not vary importantly in relevant clinical subgroups.
Conclusion: Evidence suggests a non-linear association between NGAL and CVD risk, which is dependent on inflammation and renal function.
- Cardiovascular disease
- Cohort study
- Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin
- Risk factor