Soluble ST2 is a biomarker for cardiovascular mortality related to abnormal glucose metabolism in high-risk subjects.


Department of Systems Medicine, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Via Montpellier 1, 00133, Rome, Italy. [Email]


OBJECTIVE : Inflammation plays a role in the development and progression of type 2 diabetes macroangiopathy. Interleukin 33 (IL-33) drives production of Th2-associated cytokines. The soluble form of suppression of tumorigenicity 2 (sST2) acting as a decoy receptor blocks IL-33 and tones down Th2 inflammatory response. We investigated the role of sST2 as a predictor of CV and all-cause mortality in a cohort of patients affected by established atherosclerotic disease.
METHODS : 399 patients with atherosclerotic disease from the Tor Vergata Atherosclerosis Registry performed follow-up every year by phone interview. The primary endpoint was cardiovascular death and the secondary endpoint was death for any other disease.
RESULTS : sST2 plasma levels were significantly increased from normal glucose-tolerant patients to patients with history of type 2 diabetes (p < 0.00001). Levels of sST2 were significantly correlated with fasting plasma glucose (R = 0.16, p = 0.002), HbA1c (R = 0.17, p = 0.002), and HOMA (R = 0.16, p = 0.004). Dividing patients in tertiles of sST2 levels, those belonging to the highest tertile showed an increased rate of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, (all-cause mortality p = 0.045 and CVD mortality p = 0.02). A multivariate Cox analysis revealed that sST2 increased the risk in cardiovascular mortality per SD by hazard ratio 1.050 (95% CI 1.006-1.097, p = 0.025) after adjustment for age and hs-CRP while it did not significantly change the risk for all-cause mortality.
CONCLUSIONS : High circulating level of sST2 is associated to increased CVD mortality and markers of metabolic dysfunction in subjects with atherosclerotic disease.


Cardiovascular disease,Diabetes,Inflammation,Insulin resistance,