The effect of etanercept on cardiac transplant recipients: A study of TNFα antagonism and cardiac allograft hypertrophy
Hypertrophy, Left Ventricular
Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor
Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
Cardiac allograft hypertrophy is associated with persistent expression of cardiac tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha. We investigated whether TNFalpha antagonism would impact allograft hypertrophy. EFECT (EFfect of Etanercept on Cardiac Transplantation) was a randomized, controlled, double-blind trial evaluating the effect of etanercept versus placebo treatment immediately posttransplant. The primary end-point was change in left ventricular (LV) mass after 6 months. Secondary endpoints included degree of collagen deposition at 6 months and incidence of adverse events. Forty-nine patients were randomized to either etanercept or placebo. LV mass increased significantly in both arms at 6 months, with a smaller increase in the etanercept group (19% vs. 33%, P=ns). Myocardial collagen content increased in the placebo, but not the etanercept, group (+39.8%, P<0.08 vs. -7.0%, P=NS). Allograft hypertrophy develops posttransplant with a corresponding increase in extracellular matrix. Etanercept appeared to decrease LV hypertrophy by decreasing extracellular matrix deposition.