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Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (CCLM)

Published in Association with the European Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (EFLM)

Editor-in-Chief: Plebani, Mario

Editorial Board Member: Gillery, Philippe / Kazmierczak, Steven / Lackner, Karl J. / Lippi, Giuseppe / Melichar, Bohuslav / Schlattmann, Peter / Whitfield, John B.

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The Increasing Impact of Laboratory Medicine on Clinical Cardiology

Aldo Clerico

Citation Information: Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine. Volume 41, Issue 7, Pages 871–883, ISSN (Print) 1434-6621, DOI: 10.1515/CCLM.2003.132, June 2005

Publication History

Published Online:
2005-06-01

Abstract

The practice of cardiology continues to evolve along with a better understanding of the pathophysiology of cardiovascular disease and the development of new therapeutic procedures. Consequently, new demands are being made on the in vitro diagnostics industry to improve the performance of existing cardiac markers and to develop novel markers for new cardiac disease indications. Indeed, in the last 20 years there has been a progressive increase in new laboratory tests for markers of cardiac diseases. Several highly sensitive and/or specific assays for the detection of myocardial ischemic damage as well as some immunoassays for cardiac natriuretic hormones, now considered a reliable marker of myocardial function, have become commercially available. In parallel, a growing number of some novel risk factors, which can be assessed and monitored by laboratory methods, have been added to the classical risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Finally, the recent explosion of genetic analysis may soon place at the clinical cardiologist's disposal many laboratory tests for defining the diagnosis at the molecular level, assessing new risk factors, and better targeting the pharmaceutical approaches in patients with cardiovascular disease. In the present article, after a brief description of the analytical tests included in these four groups, each group's impact on clinical cardiology is discussed in detail.

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