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Project title:


Evaluation of the most accurate and informative markers of preclinical left ventricle dysfunction in patients with asymptomatic severe / moderate aortic or mitral valve diseases

Time of implementation:

 01.06. -  30.11.2018

Involved countries and institutions:

1.    The Department of Cardiology, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Kaunas, Lithuania

2.    MRI-Core-Lab at the Department of Internal Medicine and Cardiology at German Heart Center Berlin, Germany


Aim(s) of the project:

There are no studies focusing on a complex evaluation of preclinical left ventricular dysfunction. The value of preclinical makers, obtained by different diagnostic methods (echocardiography at rest and during stress, CMR imaging and laboratory testing), has not been compared in patients with valvular heart disease.

The aims of the project:

  1. To compare LV myocardial deformation parameters at rest and during stress in patients with asymptomatic aortic or mitral valve disease with normal (LV ejection fraction (LVEF) ≥55%) and reduced (LVEF 40‒55%) LV systolic function
  2. To evaluate the correlation of LV myocardial deformation parameters obtained by 2D echocardiography and CMR imaging.
  3. To evaluate the association between inflammatory laboratory markers (interleukin-6, interleukin-1 and pentraxin-3, galectin-3), LV myocardial deformation parameters and asymptomatic aortic or mitral valve damage.
  4. To determine the most informative echocardiographic, CMR and laboratory parameters of preclinical LV dysfunction in patients with asymptomatic severe/moderate aortic or mitral valve disease and normal EF.

The necessity of the project: according to the results we will attempt to create the diagnostic algorithm of LV subclinical dysfunction for patients with moderate / severe aortic or mitral valve disease that would help select the patients for earlier interventional valve correction and improve their clinical outcomes.

Target group:

Direct: the research population will consist of about 100 patients with asymptomatic severe/moderate aortic or mitral valve diseases. They would undergo different diagnostic methods to evaluate the severity of their valvular heart disease. We are planning to determine the best time for damaged valve surgical repair.

Indirect: the incidence of aortic and mitral valve diseases is about 2% and 24% of the world population respectively. Indirectly – all this part of population might have the benefit in the near future. The results of this research could improve clinical outcomes and help prevent the prevalence of symptoms as well as decompensation of heart failure.

Main activities of the project and possible venues where the project activities will take place:

1.    Rest and stress echocardiography acquisition, CMR scans and laboratory testing will be performed at the Department of Cardiology and Department of Laboratory Medicine at Lithuanian University of Health Sciences

2.    CMR data analysis will be performed at MRI-Core-Lab at German Heart Center Berlin, Germany

Public events in the frame of the project:

The initial results of the project expected to be presented in these upcoming events: ESC Congress of Cardiology (2019 August), EuroEcho and Imaging 2019 (2019 December).

A scientific manuscript (in a periodic scientific journal with an impact factor) is expected to be published in late 2019 or 2020.