Document Detail

A new role for statins in sepsis.
Jump to Full Text
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23324213     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
ABSTRACT: Several studies have shown promising results regarding the use of statins as an adjunctive treatment for sepsis. Most of those studies were retrospective or observational in nature. The ASEPSIS trial has reported that the administration of atorvastatin reduced clinical progression of sepsis but did not improve mortality. These findings are promising and further multicenter trials are needed to confirm these outcomes and to establish whether this class of medications will offer utility in this regard.
Authors:
Jean-Sebastien Rachoin; Elizabeth Cerceo; R Phillip Dellinger
Publication Detail:
Type:  EDITORIAL     Date:  2013-1-17
Journal Detail:
Title:  Critical care (London, England)     Volume:  17     ISSN:  1466-609X     ISO Abbreviation:  Crit Care     Publication Date:  2013 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-1-17     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9801902     Medline TA:  Crit Care     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  105     Citation Subset:  -    
Affiliation:
Department of Medicine, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, Cooper University Hospital, One Cooper Plaza, Suite 229 Dorrance, Camden, NJ 08103, USA. rachoin-jean@cooperhealth.edu.
Export Citation:
APA/MLA Format     Download EndNote     Download BibTex
MeSH Terms
Descriptor/Qualifier:

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

Full Text
Journal Information
Journal ID (nlm-ta): Crit Care
Journal ID (iso-abbrev): Crit Care
ISSN: 1364-8535
ISSN: 1466-609X
Publisher: BioMed Central
Article Information
Download PDF
Copyright © 2013 BioMed Central Ltd
Print publication date: Year: 2012
Electronic publication date: Day: 17 Month: 1 Year: 2013
pmc-release publication date: Day: 17 Month: 1 Year: 2014
Volume: 17 Issue: 1
First Page: 105 Last Page: 105
PubMed Id: 23324213
ID: 4056163
Publisher Id: cc11907
DOI: 10.1186/cc11907

A new role for statins in sepsis
Jean-Sebastien Rachoin1 Email: rachoin-jean@cooperhealth.edu
Elizabeth Cerceo1 Email: Cerceo-elizabeth@cooperhealth.edu
R Phillip Dellinger1 Email: dellinger-phil@cooperhealth.edu
1Department of Medicine, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, Cooper University Hospital, One Cooper Plaza, Suite 229 Dorrance, Camden, NJ 08103, USA

Introduction

In the previous issue of Critical Care, Patel and colleagues report the result of a single-center study that randomized septic patients to atorvastatin or placebo. The authors found that patients treated with statins had less transition to severe sepsis although mortality was no different between the treated and untreated patients [1]. These findings, although promising, need to be confirmed in larger, multicenter trials.

Sepsis is a systemic inflammatory response syndrome triggered by infection, while severe sepsis is organ dysfunction due to infection. Severe sepsis is associated with high rates of morbidity and mortality. The incidence of sepsis has increased over the last few decades and in the United States currently affects more than 750,000 patients annually [1]. Sepsis is estimated to be directly responsible for more than 200,000 deaths and results in $17 billion of costs annually [2,3]. An impressive amount of research has been devoted to understanding the pathophysiology of sepsis, and to the testing of potential treatments. Despite significant advances, 30 to 40% of patients with severe sepsis still die in the ICU [2].


Main text

The primaum mauvens in severe sepsis is thought to be an uncontrolled proinflammatory response triggered by infectious agents that leads to organ dysfunction. This response starts when microbial antigenic structures bind to specific receptors on leukocytes and induce a highly complex cascade of biochemical reactions This induction then results in generation of a myriad of proinflammatory and procoagulant agents [4]. In addition to the lipid-lowering and cardiovascular protective effects of statins, a significant body of evidence supports their potential role in the amelioration of the proinflammatory process of sepsis. This evidence includes in vitro biologic plausibility studies, animal models, and human trials.

Biologic plausibility

HMG CoA inhibitors (statins) decrease the production of isoprenoid lipid and inhibit the activation of GTPase protein via their effects on prenylation [5]. Statins have been shown to act on several crucial steps in sepsis: the generation of proinflammatory cytokines (IL-6, IL-8, and TNFα), modulation of leukocyte and monocyte functions, and reduction of oxidative stress as well as improvement in endothelial function and platelet activity. In one trial, simvastatin reduced the systemic response to endotoxin administration and decreased expression of Toll-like receptors that hold a key early role in sepsis [6]. In addition, an antimicrobial effect of statins on methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus and methicillin-resistant S. aureus has been reported [7].

Animal models

Animal models on statin use in the setting of sepsis have shown some promising results. In a cecal ligation and puncture mouse model of sepsis, treatment with simvastatin, atorvastatin, and pravastatin but not fluvastatin prolonged survival primarily by improvement of cardiac function and systemic hemodynamics [8].

Human studies

A significant body of evidence indicates that there may be a role for statins in the treatment of sepsis. Although most of the trials are retrospective and observational in nature, their conclusions are promising. The trial finding indicate that statins may decrease the level of inflammatory cytokines, the incidence of de-novo sepsis, the worsening of ongoing sepsis, and possibly also sepsis mortality.

Novack and colleagues randomized 83 patients with acute bacterial infections to simvastatin or placebo and showed that treatment with statins reduced cytokine levels at 72 hours [9].

A retrospective study of 787 patients admitted with pneumonia showed that pretreatment with statins was associated with improved mortality [10].

Some authors have cautioned against the use of statins in the treatment of sepsis due to concerns of myopathy and hepatotoxicity [11]. Prospective randomized controlled trials are therefore needed to definitively establish the appropriate adjunctive role for statins in sepsis and to adequately estimate the magnitude of any possible adverse events.

In the previous issue of Critical Care, Patel and colleagues take a step toward answering the question of whether or not statins are of utility in the prevention of severe sepsis. Within their randomized control setting, the authors minimized biases inherent to retrospective trials. The selection of statin-naïve patients was appropriate but may have hindered some of their potential findings, especially if a prolonged pretreatment period is needed to durably affect outcomes. Showing clinical outcome benefits of statins in a floor population of hospital patients with lower acuity of illness will probably be difficult to demonstrate in the absence of very large trials. The great majority of patients with sepsis do not progress to severe sepsis and therefore prophylactic treatment to prevent severe sepsis would require treatment of a large number of patients who may not benefit. Treatment that shows a decrease in progression to a disease state linked to increased mortality without an effect on decreasing this mortality is also problematic.


Conclusion

There are some important take-home messages from this study. First, there is a need for larger, multicenter randomized controlled trials in patients with variable degrees of severity of illness, analyzing hard endpoints to establish any role for statins in septic patients. Second, clinicians should probably avoid, if possible, stopping statins in critically ill patients with sepsis who are already taking statins at the time of admission. Given our small armamentarium of agents in sepsis, statins could prove a useful addition.


Abbreviations

HMG CoA: 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl-CoA reductase; IL: interleukin; TNF: tumor necrosis factor.


Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


References
Patel JM,Thickett DR,Linhartova L,Melody T,Hawkey P,Barnett A,Jones A,Hong T,Cooke MW,Perkins GD,Gao F,Randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial of 40 mg/day of atorvastatin in reducing the severity of sepsis in ward patients (ASEPSIS Trial)Crit CareYear: 201217R23110.1186/cc1189523232151
Angus DC,Linde-Zwirble WT,Lidicker J,Clermont G,Carcillo J,Pinsky MR,Epidemiology of severe sepsis in the United States: analysis of incidence, outcome, and associated costs of careCrit Care MedYear: 2001171303131010.1097/00003246-200107000-0000211445675
Melamed A,Sorvillo FJ,The burden of sepsis-associated mortality in the United States from 1999 to 2005: an analysis of multiple-cause-of-death dataCrit CareYear: 200917R2810.1186/cc773319250547
Cinel I,Dellinger RP,Advances in pathogenesis and management of sepsisCurr Opin Infect DisYear: 20071734535210.1097/QCO.0b013e32818be70a17609592
Greenwood J,Steinman L,Zamvil SS,Statin therapy and autoimmune disease: from protein prenylation to immunomodulationNat Rev ImmunolYear: 20061735837010.1038/nri183916639429
Niessner A,Steiner S,Speidl WS,Pleiner J,Seidinger D,Maurer G,Goronzy JJ,Weyand CM,Kopp CW,Huber K,Wolzt M,Wojta J,Simvastatin suppresses endotoxin-induced upregulation of toll-like receptors 4 and 2 in vivoAtherosclerosisYear: 20061740841310.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2005.12.02216443229
Jerwood S,Cohen J,Unexpected antimicrobial effect of statinsJ Antimicrob ChemotherYear: 20081736236418086693
Merx MW,Liehn EA,Graf J,van de Sandt A,Schaltenbrand M,Schrader J,Hanrath P,Weber C,Statin treatment after onset of sepsis in a murine model improves survivalCirculationYear: 20051711712410.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.104.50219515998696
Novack V,Eisinger M,Frenkel A,Terblanche M,Adhikari NK,Douvdevani A,Amichay D,Almog Y,The effects of statin therapy on inflammatory cytokines in patients with bacterial infections: a randomized double-blind placebo controlled clinical trialIntensive Care MedYear: 2009171255126010.1007/s00134-009-1429-019205663
Mortensen EM,Restrepo MI,Anzueto A,Pugh J,The effect of prior statin use on 30-day mortality for patients hospitalized with community-acquired pneumoniaRespir ResYear: 2005178210.1186/1465-9921-6-8216042797
Vincent A,Miller JA,Statins for sepsis: a cautionary noteIntensive Care MedYear: 20061779510.1007/s00134-006-0143-416550367

Article Categories:
  • Commentary


Previous Document:  Genetic variation and expression diversity between grain and sweet sorghum lines.
Next Document:  6p22.3 deletion: report of a patient with autism, severe intellectual disability and electroencephal...