Journal of Thrombosis and Thrombolysis

, Volume 36, Issue 4, pp 361–367 | Cite as

Evaluation of the diagnostic performance of heart-type fatty acid binding protein in the BWH-TIMI ED chest pain study

  • Christian T. Ruff
  • Marc P. Bonaca
  • Joshua M. Kosowsky
  • Michael J. Conrad
  • Sabina A. Murphy
  • Petr Jarolim
  • Sean M. Donahoe
  • Michelle L. O’Donoghue
  • David A. Morrow


Chest pain is one of the most common reasons for presentation to the Emergency Department and the ability to rapidly and correctly diagnose the minority of patients who have a myocardial infarction is of critical importance. We assessed the diagnostic performance of a multimarker strategy using heart-type fatty acid binding protein (H-FABP) in combination with a contemporary sensitive troponin (cTn) assay. We measured H-FABP (Randox) and a sensitive cTn (TnI-Ultra, Siemens) at baseline in 343 patients with chest pain enrolled in the prospective BWH-TIMI ED chest pain study. Final presenting diagnosis was adjudicated using all diagnostic data, including the local cTnI results, but reviewers were blinded to H-FABP and the sensitive cTn assays. The diagnostic accuracy of H-FABP and local cTn together (AUC 0.962) was superior to local cTn alone (AUC 0.910, p = 0.0009) with an especially marked improvement in early presenters (AUC 0.983 vs. 0.840, p = 0.0098). In contrast, when combined with the sensitive cTn assay, there was no significant difference in the AUC with H-FABP as compared with the sensitive cTn alone, either in the overall cohort (AUC 0.963 vs. 0.956, p = 0.23) or in early presenters (AUC 0.999 for both). In early presenters, the addition of H-FABP resulted in a NPV of 100 % when combined with either the local or sensitive cTn assay. In our study, the addition of H-FABP significantly enhanced the sensitivity and accuracy of diagnosis as compared to a prior-generation troponin assay alone, especially in patients who presented early. H-FABP but did improve overall diagnostic accuracy when added to a current-generation sensitive troponin assay; however, their combination offered the best NPV in early presenters. Further studies are needed to determine the utility a very rapid “rule out” of MI with a single blood draw of troponin and H-FABP at presentation.


Chest pain Emergency department H-FABP Myocardial infarction Acute coronary syndromes 



The TIMI Study Group has received research Grant support from Abbott, Amgen, AstraZeneca, Beckman Coulter, BG Medicine, BRAHMS, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Buhlmann, Critical Diagnostics, CV Therapeutics, Daiichi Sankyo Co Ltd, Eli Lilly and Co, GlaxoSmithKline, Merck and Co, Nanosphere, Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics, Pfizer, Randox, Roche Diagnostics, Sanofi-Aventis, Siemens, and Singulex.

Conflict of interest

Dr. Ruff is an investigator and receives salary support from the TIMI Study Group. He has received remuneration for consulting from Alere, Beckman Coulter, Daiichi Sankyo, Boerhinger-Ingelheim. Dr. Bonaca is an investigator and receives salary support from the TIMI Study Group. Dr. Kosowsky, Mr. Conrad, Mrs. Murphy none to report. Dr. Jarolim has received research grant support from Beckman-Coulter, Amgen, BRAHMS, Daiichi Sankyo, Merck & Co., Abbott, Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics, Roche, and Siemens. Has received honoraria from Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics and served as a consultant to T2 Biosystems and Quanterix. Dr. Donahoe none to report. Dr. O’Donoghue is an investigator and receives salary support from the TIMI Study Group. She has received remuneration for consulting from Aegerion. Dr. Morrow is an investigator and receives salary from the TIMI Study Group. He has received remuneration for consulting from Beckman-Coulter, Boehringher Ingelheim, Critical Diagnostics, Genentech, Gilead, Instrumentation Laboratory, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Roche Diagnostics, and Servier.

Supplementary material

11239_2013_870_MOESM1_ESM.docx (17 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 16 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christian T. Ruff
    • 1
  • Marc P. Bonaca
    • 1
  • Joshua M. Kosowsky
    • 2
  • Michael J. Conrad
    • 3
  • Sabina A. Murphy
    • 1
  • Petr Jarolim
    • 3
  • Sean M. Donahoe
    • 4
  • Michelle L. O’Donoghue
    • 1
  • David A. Morrow
    • 1
  1. 1.TIMI Study Group, Cardiovascular Division, Department of MedicineBrigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Emergency MedicineBrigham and Women’s HospitalBostonUSA
  3. 3.Department of PathologyBrigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  4. 4.Eastern Suffolk Cardiology, Stony Brook Community MedicalSouthamptonUSA

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