Integrative pathway-centric modeling of ventricular dysfunction after myocardial infarction.
- Cardiovascular Research Unit
BACKGROUND: A significant proportion of myocardial infarction (MI) patients undergo complex, coordinated perturbations at the molecular level that may eventually drive the occurrence of ventricular dysfunction and heart failure. Despite advances in the elucidation of key processes implicated in this condition, traditional methods relying on gene expression data and the identification of individual biomarkers in isolation pose major limitations not only for improving prediction power, but also for model interpretability. Mechanisms underlying clinical responses after MI remain elusive and there is no biomarker with the capacity to accurately predict ventricular dysfunction after MI. This calls for the exploration of system-level modeling of ventricular dysfunction in post-MI patients. Within this discovery framework key perturbations and predictive patterns are characterized by the integrated biological activity levels observed in pathways, rather than in individual genes. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we report an integrative approach to identifying pathways related with ventricular dysfunction post MI with potential prognostic and therapeutic value. We found that a diversity of pathway-level perturbations can be profiled in samples of patients with ventricular dysfunction post MI, most of which represent major reductions of gene expression. Highly perturbed pathways included those implicated in antigen-dependent B-cell activation and the synthesis of leucine. By analyzing patient-specific samples encoded with information derived from highly-perturbed pathways, it is possible to visualize differential prognostic patterns and to perform computational classification of patients with areas under the receiver operating characteristic curve above 0.75. We also demonstrate how the integration of the outcomes generated by different pathway-based analysis models may improve ventricular dysfunction prediction performance. SIGNIFICANCE: This research offers an alternative, comprehensive view of key relationships and perturbations that may trigger the emergence or prevention of ventricular dysfunction post-MI.