Background: Cardiovascular (CV) diseases are major causes of mortality in uremic patients. Conventional risk factors fail to identify uremic patients with increased propensity for adverse CV outcomes. We aimed to test the hypothesis that circulating long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) could be a prognostic marker to predict adverse CV outcomes in uremic patients. Methods and results: Plasma lncRNAs were profiled in patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD, n = 28) or chronic kidney disease (CKD, n = 8) and in healthy (n = 12) subjects by RNA sequencing. A total of 179 lncRNAs were significantly dysregulated with ESRD; the expression signature of plasma lncRNAs distinguished ESRD from both CKD and control samples. Analysis on a microarray dataset obtained from renal biopsy samples of patients with advanced kidney disease (GSE66494) revealed that a significant proportion of plasma lncRNAs (30.7%) and mRNAs (49.5%) dysregulated with uremia were similarly dysregulated in diseased kidneys, suggesting that plasma RNA profiles mirror the transcriptomal changes in diseased kidney tissues. Further analyses identified eight plasma lncRNAs as potential predictors of adverse CV outcomes in uremic patients. Validation study in an independent cohort of ESRD patients (n = 111) confirmed that elevated plasma lncRNA DKFZP434I0714 is a significant independent predictor of adverse CV outcomes in uremic patients. Additional experiments demonstrated the functional involvement of DKFZP434I0714 in the pathogenesis of endothelial dysfunction. Conclusions: In summary, plasma lncRNA expression signature reflects the disease states of uremia. Elevated plasma levels of lncRNA DKFZP434I0714 in uremic patients portend a worse CV outcome and warrant closer monitoring and more aggressive management.
- Adverse cardiovascular events
- Endothelial dysfunction
- Long noncoding RNA