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Differential effects of lipophilic and hydrophilic statins on muscle sympathetic nerve activity in heart failure with preserved left ventricular ejection fraction

      Highlights

      • Pharmacological therapies for HFpEF have not improved the prognosis of patients.
      • Augmented sympathetic nerve activity is associated with HFpEF.
      • We investigated the effects of different types of statins on MSNA in HFpEF with consideration of the statin solubility.
      • Atorvastatin reduced MSNA without affecting baroreflex sensitivity in HFpEF, but rosuvastatin did not.
      • Atorvastatin have a favorable effect on sympathetic nerve activity in HFpEF.

      Abstract

      Augmented sympathetic nerve activity is associated with heart failure with preserved left ventricular ejection fraction (HFpEF). Lipophilic statins reduce sympathetic nerve activity in patients with heart failure with reduced left ventricular ejection fraction. However, little is known about whether all types of statins, regardless of solubility, reduce sympathetic nerve activity in HFpEF. We evaluated the effect of atorvastatin, a lipophilic statin, and rosuvastatin, a hydrophilic statin, on muscle sympathetic nerve activity (MSNA) in HFpEF patients. This study was conducted as a prospective, randomized, open-label, crossover trial. Ten HFpEF patients with untreated hyperlipidemia participated in this study. Subjects were assigned to either the atorvastatin (lipophilic) or the rosuvastatin (hydrophilic) group with each drug administered for 8 weeks. Atorvastatin and rosuvastatin treatment resulted in a similar reduction in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels. There was no difference in the effect of either treatment on blood pressure, heart rate, or left ventricular function. Atorvastatin significantly decreased MSNA frequency compared with baseline (31.5 ± 6.3 vs. 47.5 ± 10.7 bursts/min, p < 0.01), but rosuvastatin had no effect on MSNA (40.9 ± 7.3 bursts/min). MSNA was significantly lower in the atorvastatin group than rosuvastatin group (p < 0.05). However, the reduction in MSNA seen in either group did not correlate with the reduction in LDL-C. No significant differences were observed in either the baroreflex control of heart rate or MSNA between the two groups. These results suggest that lipophilic statins have a favorable effect on sympathetic nerve activity beyond lowering LDL-C in HFpEF, but hydrophilic statins do not.

      Abbreviations:

      HFpEF (heart failure with preserved left ventricular ejection fraction), HFrEF (heart failure with reduced left ventricular ejection fraction), MSNA (muscle sympathetic nerve activity), LDL-C (low-density lipoprotein cholesterol), HR (heart rate), BP (blood pressure), LVEF (left ventricular ejection fraction)

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