© The Author(s) 2016. Circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA) has been described as a prognostic marker for several diseases. Its prognostic value for short-term outcome in stroke patients treated with intravenous thrombolysis remains unexplored. cfDNA was measured on admission in 54 tissue plasminogen activator (tPA)-treated patients and 15 healthy controls using a real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction assay. Neurological outcome was assessed at 48 h. Predictors of neurological improvement were evaluated by logistic regression analysis, and the additional predictive value of cfDNA over clinical variables was determined by integrated discrimination improvement (IDI). Stroke patients presented higher baseline cfDNA than healthy controls (408.5 (179–700.5) vs. 153.5 (66.9–700.5) kilogenome-equivalents/L, p = 0.123). A trend towards lower cfDNA levels was found in patients who neurologically improved at 48 h (269.5 (143.3–680) vs. 504 (345.9–792.3) kilogenome-equivalents/L, p = 0.130). In logistic regression analysis, recanalization at 1 h and cfDNA < 302.75 kilogenome-equivalents/L was independently associated with neurological improvement after adjustment by age, gender and baseline National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score. The addition of cfDNA to the clinical predictive model improved its discrimination (IDI = 21.2% (9.2–33.3%), p = 0.009). These data suggest that cfDNA could be a surrogate marker for monitoring tPA efficacy by the prediction of short-term neurological outcome.
- circulating DNA
- neurological improvement