Journal of Cerebrovascular Disease 2020 Vol.3 No.1 1-9

Post-ischemic elevation of circulating hepatocyte growth factor differentiates stroke from transient ischemic attack

Author(s): Hao Jiang1,Jian-Bo Yu1,Kai-Yuan Huang1,Yu Zhu1,Feng Xiao1,Jian Shen1,Heng-Jun Zhou1,Jian-Wei Pan1,Ren-Ya Zhan1

Affiliation(s): 1Stroke Center, Department of Neurosurgery, The First Affiliated Hospital, Zhejiang University, School of Medicine

Corresponding Author: Jian-Wei Pan

Corresponding email(s):

Key Words: Hepatocyte growth factor; Serological biomarker; Ischemic stroke; Transient ischemic attack


Background: A rapid elevation of post-ischemic circulating hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) levels has been reported in acute vascular disease including stroke. However, the impact of transient ischemic attack (TIA) on circulating HGF has never been studied.

Methods: Patients with an onset of either stroke or TIA within the past 30 days were enrolled. Based on the ischemic event, the patients were divided into a stroke group and a TIA group. Blood samples were collected at enrollment and at follow-up visits at one, three, and six months until a recurrent cerebral ischemic event. Plasma levels of HGF were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and logarithmically transformed to eliminate skewness.

Results: Thirty-six patients were enrolled in the study, with 20 in the stroke group and 16 in the TIA group. The dynamic HGF levels post-ischemia showed distinct patterns between the two groups. A significant decrease of HGF levels was observed in the stroke group, from 2.62 ± 0.18 ng/mL within 30 days after stroke to 2.41 ± 0.22 ng/mL beyond 30 days (P = 0.026); however, no significant change was found in the TIA group (2.22 ± 0.17 ng/mL vs. 2.19 ± 0.16 ng/mL, P = 0.990). A multivariate regression analysis showed a last event of stroke and a comorbidity of systemic atherosclerotic disease (SAD) were independently associated with higher levels of HGF. Subgroup analyses showed HGF levels decreased from 2.64 ± 0.22 ng/mL within 30 days after stroke to 2.36 ± 0.18 ng/mL beyond 30 days in patients without SAD (P = 0.008), but not in patients with SAD (P = 0.700).

Conclusion: Our data indicate that in patients without SAD, circulating HGF is a potential biomarker to distinguish between stroke and TIA.

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On-line Access: 2020-03-01

Received: 2019-12-21

Revision Accepted: 2020-02-10

Publish: 2020-03-01

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