After the pivotal discovery of atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) in 1981 and subsequent identification of BNP in 1988, the focus of worldwide research on cardiac peptides (NP) has moved over the subsequent two decades from identification and measurement to characterization of biological actions and elucidation of the roles NP play in circulatory homeostasis, through to clinical applications. Internationally, guidelines for the diagnosis of heart failure (HF) incorporate plasma BNP/NTproBNP which assist in distinguishing HF from other diagnoses in acutely breathless patients. Across the spectrum of cardiovascular disease from asymptomatic risk factor through to severe HF, the B type peptides provide powerful independent prognostic information.[2, 3]
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