Current cardiovascular risk prediction models incorporate traditional risk factors to estimate 10-year cardiovascular risk. Numerous blood-based biomarkers have been identified that are associated with increased cardiovascular risk after adjusting for traditional risk factors. Many of these biomarkers, alone or in combination, have been incorporated into risk prediction models to determine whether their addition increases the model's predictive ability. We review the recently published literature on blood-based biomarkers and examine whether incorporating these markers may improve clinical decision making. © Current Medicine Group LLC 2008.