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Highlights from EuroPRevent Stockholm - new scientific advances

At the 4th EuroPRevent Congress, the meeting place for science in cardiovascular prevention, a large amount of new findings were presented.


Among the highlights of the six EACPR sections of the meeting were the following:

Basic science:

Adiponectin, produced in the adipose tissue, normally has a protective effect against CVD but a reverse effect is observed in patients with cardiac failure. Here a five-fold increase is observed which may lead to a downregulation at the receptor level but apparently exercise training can attenuate this downregulation.


U. Keil (DE) reported the almost linear prolongation of the expected life length over the past 160 years. Each decade two years have been added to life length. From USA and UK the fall in CVD mortality has been slowed down or in young age groups reversed, apparently related to lifestyle factors. Has the continuous gain of life length come to a halt after160 years? Prevention and Health Policy: even here the question was asked “Is the party over, have we seen the end of the fall in CVD mortality? Voices were raised to demand policies for populations instead of tablets for individuals.
Over the period 1908-2000 systolic blood pressure has fallen with 3 mmHg in average in the Monica cohort studies. According to R. Jackson (NZ) this was due to a combination of a decrease in salt intake, saturated fat, smoking and the increased consumption of fruits and vegetables, despite the increase in BMI, alcohol and physical inactivity.

Cardiac Rehabilitation:

The 5-year follow up of the PET-Pilot study, in which PCI was compared to an exercise training (ET) programme for patients with stable angina pectoris, showed that the beneficial effect of ET was maintained over the entire period in contrast to the PCI treated group. Interval aerobic training (IT) alone has been compared to a combination of IT and resistance training: only in the combined group an improvement of endothelial function was found. Adding aquatic therapy to conventional training of patients with heart failure was shown to be safe and extended the 6-minute walking distance with 50%.

Exercise Physiology:

Does regular exercise protect against an age-related cognitive decline? In Stockholm the findings of a study on the effect of physical activity on 5-year cognitive decline showed a protective effect related to the average intensity of physical exercising Sports Cardiology: is it time to screen all competitive athletes? Experience form Italy has shown that systematic screening has reduced the level of sudden cardiac death in athletes to below that in the normal population.
In marathon runner a cardiac overtraining syndrome has been described: rises in troponines after a maraton, arrhythmias and in the long run the development of dilated cardiomyopathy. In a study of 180 runners (30 km cross country) a significant rise in NT-proBNP was found in 15 cases, several of these demonstrated clinically significant CVD at examination. The longterm effects of ultra-endurance sports merit further investigation. Finally, the question was posed if sexual activity was just another kind of sport. However, at EuroPRevent it was reported that the metabolic demand of sexual activity was too low to elicit a significant effect on exercise performance.


EuroPRevent has evolved to be the forum for new science in preventive cardiology.




Highlights from EuroPRevent Stockholm - new scientific advances

Notes to editor

This congress report accompanies a presentation given at the ESC Congress 2009. Written by the author himself/herself, this report does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Society of Cardiology.

The content of this article reflects the personal opinion of the author/s and is not necessarily the official position of the European Society of Cardiology.