Questioning a Class Effect: Does ACE Inhibitor Tissue Penetration Influence the Degree of Fibrinolytic Balance Alteration following an Acute Myocardial Infarction?

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There is a common belief in a class effect among angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. This is unsubstantiated for acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Because vascular tissue is a source of the endogenous fibrinolytic markers, and ACE inhibition in vascular tissue favorably influences the fibrinolytic system, the authors hypothesized that a high-tissue-penetrating ACE inhibitor would provide a more favorable reduction in plasminogen activator inhibitor–1 (PAI-1) and an increase in tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) after AMI compared to a low-tissue-penetrating ACE inhibitor. In a randomized open-label trial, patients received the high-tissue-penetrating quinapril (n = 15) or low-tissue-penetrating enalapril (n = 15) immediately following an AMI. PAI-1 and t-PA antigen (ng/mL) were measured at baseline and through 14 days of treatment. There was no difference in baseline PAI-1 or t-PA antigen between treatments. PAI-1 antigen trended toward being lower with quinapril versus enalapril on day 1 (24.44 ± 4.96 vs. 36.94 ±19.49, respectively, p = 0.059) and was significantly lower on day 3 (17.32 ±9.57 vs. 27.49 ± 9.61, respectively, p = 0.009). Analysis of PAI-1 antigen over time by two-factor ANOVA with replication found significantly lower concentrations of PAI-1 antigen over the entire treatment period with quinapril versus enalapril (p < 0.003). This investigation of ACE inhibitor tissue-penetrating influence on markers of reinfarction risk suggests there may be a greater early reduction in PAI-1 with a more highly tissue-penetrating ACE inhibitor.

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