High Leptin Increases Mortality Risk in Stable Coronary Heart Disease

Middle aged businessman with chest pain
Middle aged businessman with chest pain
Researchers at AHA 2021 presented a study that sought to determine whether high leptin affects the risk for mortality or morbidity in patients with stable CHD.

Having a high leptin concentration increases mortality risk, particularly death by fatal cardiovascular (CV) events, and leads to worsening of heart failure (HF) in people with stable coronary heart disease (CHD), according to study results presented at the American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions 2021, held from November 13 to 15, 2021.

For the prospective study, researchers explored whether a high leptin concentration would impact the mortality and morbidity risk in patients with stable CHD. Researchers followed 975 patients (EUROASPIRE cohort), who had had myocardial infarction (MI) at least 6 months prior. Study outcomes included CV or all-cause death, nonfatal events (stroke, MI, or any revascularization), and hospitalizations for HF.

High serum leptin concentrations (defined as ≥18.9 ng/mL, i.e. 4th quartile) demonstrated inferior survival and produced a higher incidence of hospitalizations for HF and fatal vascular events. High serum leptin was associated with 5-years’ risk for HF hospitalization (hazard rate ratio [HRR], 1.95; 95% CI, 1.11-3.44; P <.020), CV death (HRR, 2.65; 95% CI, 1.48-4.74; P <.001), and all-cause death (HRR, 2.10; 95% CI, 1.29-3.42; P <.003), even after full adjustments were made for potential covariates. Conversely, high leptin only marginally and nonsignificantly influenced the incidence risk for nonfatal CV events (HRR, 1.27; 95% CI, 0.76-2.13; P =.359).

“High leptin concentration entails an increased risk for mortality (apparently driven by fatal CV events) and future worsening of HF, on top of conventional CV risk factors and the baseline status of left ventricular function,” the study authors noted.


Mayer O, Bruthans J, Seidlerová J, Gelžinský J, Kučera R. The high circulating leptin is associated with increased mortality risk in stable coronary heart disease patients. Presented at: AHA Scientific Sessions 2021; November 13-15, 2021. Poster P44.

This article originally appeared on The Cardiology Advisor