January 27th, 2011
HPS Results Suggest Baseline CRP Doesn’t Predict Statin Efficacy
Analysis of data from the Heart Protection Study (HPS) indicates that a CRP measurement obtained at baseline does not predict the effect of statin therapy. In a paper published online in the Lancet, the HPS Collaborative Group report the results of the more than 20,000-patient HPS study based on CRP category at baseline. As previously reported, in the overall trial major vascular events were reduced with statins by 24% when compared to placebo.
In the current report, the investigators report no significant differences in the relative effect of statins among 6 groups determined by CRP baseline levels. Even in patients with the lowest CRP concentrations, statin treatment resulted in a 29% reduction in events. The same pattern was true for LDL levels and for the combination of LDL and CRP levels: a 27% reduction in risk was observed in patients with both low LDL and low CRP levels at baseline.
The HPS investigators conclude: “The results do not lend support to the suggestion that the beneficial effects of statin therapy are affected by baseline CRP concentration or, more generally, by inflammation status.”
In an accompanying comment, Jean-Pierre Després notes that although CRP and LDL did not predict the relative efficacy of statins, they were both associated with the absolute risk of patients in HPS.
Paul M. Ridker, a leading researcher on the value of C-reactive protein (CRP) concentration as a prognostic marker of cardiovascular risk, responds to this latest study in his new Voices blog: Does CRP Level Modify the Benefit of Statins? Paul Ridker Reacts to New Data.