Abstract Background: Several biomarkers are associated with mortality in hemodialysis patients. In particular, elevated cardiac troponin T and B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) are strong predictors of mortality; however, less is known about cardiac troponin I (cTnI). Elevated troponin I is detected in many hemodialysis patients, but the association of moderate elevations with mortality is unclear. Methods: The relation between mortality and cTnI, using a high-sensitivity cTnI assay, as well as BNP and C-reactive protein (CRP) was evaluated in 206 chronic hemodialysis patients. Results: Median follow-up was 28 months with a total mortality of 35%. Mortality was significantly associated with elevated cTnI, BNP and CRP. Even patients with only moderate elevation of cTnI (0.01-0.10 mug/L) showed 2.5-fold increased mortality. Interestingly, hazard ratios for mortality for single (random) measurements were comparable to those for mean/median measurements. Subsequently, subgroup analysis based on combined markers was performed. Patients with both cTnI <0.01 mug/L and BNP in the first quartile had 100% survival. Patients with either cTnI <0.01 mug/L or BNP in the lowest quartile had significantly lower mortality (12% and 13%, respectively) than patients with BNP levels in the second quartile or higher and cTnI of 0.01-0.05 mug/L and patients with cTnI >/=0.05 mug/L (mortality 46 and 58%, respectively). Conclusions: A combination of moderate elevation of cTnI and BNP provided additional prognostic value. A single measurement of these biomarkers performed comparably to the mean/median of multiple measurements.