The suPAR level is associated with:

  • Atherosclerosis1,2
  • Carotid plaques3
  • Cardiovascular diseases and diabetes4,5
  • Cerebrovascular diseases6,7
  • Ischemic stroke7

The uPA/uPAR system plays a key role in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis and vascular diseases1,2. In addition to the role in fibrinolysis and activation of plasminogen into active plasmin, an elevated suPAR level has been found in relation to carotid plaques, and the occurrence of uPAR is increased in atherosclerotic lesions3.

An elevated suPAR level is found in patients with symptoms of cerebrovascular diseases like amaurosis fugax, transient cerebral ischemia (TCI), and stroke6.

In patients with carotid plaques, the suPAR level is significantly higher compared to patients with no plaques. After adjustment for risk factors, it was found that patients with a high suPAR level (median 3.7 ng/mL) and carotid plaques are at a significantly higher risk of experiencing an ischemic stroke compared to patients with a low suPAR level (median 2.3 ng/mL) and no plaques7.

  1. Nicholl SM, Roztocil E, Davies MG. Plasminogen activator system and vascular disease. Curr Vasc Pharmacol. 2006;4:101–116.
  2. Fuhrman B. The urokinase system in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis.Atherosclerosis. 2012;222:8–14.
  3. Edsfeldt A, Nitulescu M, Grufman H, Grönberg C, Persson A, Nilsson M, et al. Soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor is associ- ated with inflammation in the vulnerable human atherosclerotic plaque. Stroke. 2012;43:3305–3312.
  4. Eugen-Olsen J, Andersen O, Linneberg A, Ladelund S, Hansen TW, Langkilde A, et al. Circulating soluble urokinase plasminogen activatorreceptor predicts cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and mortality in the general population. J Intern Med. 2010;268:296–308.
  5. Persson M, Engström G, Björkbacka H, Hedblad B. Soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor in plasma is associated with incidence of CVD. Results from the Malmö Diet and Cancer Study. Atherosclerosis.2012;220:502–505.
  6. Olsen FJ, Thurison T, Ryndel M et al. Soluble urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor forms in plasma as a marker of atherosclerotic plaque vulnerability. Clin BIochem. 2010;43:124-130.
  7. Persson M, Ostling G, Smith G, et al. Soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor: a risk factor for carotid plaque, stroke, and coronary artery disease. 2014;45(1):18-23.