High erythropoietin levels indicate increased risk of death

October 25, 2010, Canadian Medical Association Journal

High erythropoietin levels in people over age 85 indicate a higher risk of death, according to a study published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Erythropoietin is a hormone created in the kidneys to stimulate production of . Production is triggered by impaired oxygen delivery to the kidney because of anemia or low blood oxygen levels. In patients with chronic , high erythropoietin levels predict higher mortality.

The researchers looked at data from the Leiden 85-plus Study which involved 428 people aged 85 years or older in Leiden, the Netherlands.

They found that "high erythropoietin levels were associated with increased mortality, independent of creatinine clearance, hemoglobin level, the presence of comorbidity, smoking and circulating markers of inflammation," writes Wendy den Elzen, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, the Netherlands, with coauthors.

"We showed that elevated erythropoietin has important prognostic value for mortality in the general population of older individuals," write the authors. "However, we do not know whether high erythropoietin, apart from being a risk marker of increased mortality in old age, is also a causal risk factor of increased mortality."

They call for further studies to look into the underlying biological mechanism and to understand the clinical implications of a high erythropoietin level in older people.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Researchers illustrate how muscle growth inhibitor is activated, could aid in treating ALS

January 19, 2018
Researchers at the University of Cincinnati (UC) College of Medicine are part of an international team that has identified how the inactive or latent form of GDF8, a signaling protein also known as myostatin responsible for ...

Bioengineered soft microfibers improve T-cell production

January 18, 2018
T cells play a key role in the body's immune response against pathogens. As a new class of therapeutic approaches, T cells are being harnessed to fight cancer, promising more precise, longer-lasting mitigation than traditional, ...

Weight flux alters molecular profile, study finds

January 17, 2018
The human body undergoes dramatic changes during even short periods of weight gain and loss, according to a study led by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Secrets of longevity protein revealed in new study

January 17, 2018
Named after the Greek goddess who spun the thread of life, Klotho proteins play an important role in the regulation of longevity and metabolism. In a recent Yale-led study, researchers revealed the three-dimensional structure ...

The HLF gene protects blood stem cells by maintaining them in a resting state

January 17, 2018
The HLF gene is necessary for maintaining blood stem cells in a resting state, which is crucial for ensuring normal blood production. This has been shown by a new research study from Lund University in Sweden published in ...

Magnetically applied MicroRNAs could one day help relieve constipation

January 17, 2018
Constipation is an underestimated and debilitating medical issue related to the opioid epidemic. As a growing concern, researchers look to new tools to help patients with this side effect of opioid use and aging.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.