Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Study finds association between coronary artery plaque and liver disease

04.11.2014

Researchers using coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA) have found a close association between high-risk coronary artery plaque and a common liver disease. The study, published online in the journal Radiology, found that a single CT exam can detect both conditions.

Previous research has shown that CCTA can detect high-risk coronary artery plaque, or plaque prone to life-threatening ruptures. For the new study, researchers looked at associations between high-risk plaque and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), a condition characterized by abnormal liver function that is not associated with excessive alcohol consumption. NAFLD is the most common liver disease, with an estimated prevalence of 20 percent to 30 percent in the general population.

"As it is known that atherosclerosis is linked to inflammation, our next step was to look for an association of high-risk plaques with other systemic inflammatory conditions such as NAFLD," said the study's lead author, Stefan B. Puchner, M.D., from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston and the Medical University of Vienna, Austria. "Interestingly, both pathologies can be detected in a single CT examination."

The researchers drew patients from a large trial focusing on the use of CCTA in people who had come to the emergency department with acute chest pain. The patients underwent both non-enhanced CT to assess coronary calcium, a marker of atherosclerosis, and contrast-enhanced CCTA. Readers assessed the CCTA images for signs of high-risk plaque.

Overall, 182 of the 445 patients in the study, or 40.9 percent, had CT evidence of NAFLD. High-risk plaque was seen in 59.3 percent of patients with NAFLD, compared to only 19 percent of those without NAFLD. The association between NAFLD and high-risk plaque persisted after adjusting for the extent and severity of coronary atherosclerosis and traditional risk factors.

The results suggest that high-risk plaque and NAFLD are both part of the same systemic disease process, the metabolic syndrome.

"The clinical implications could include a wider assessment of NAFLD using the non-contrast cardiac CT scans that are commonly performed prior to the CTA," he said. "Further, the additional assessment of NAFLD with CT could improve the risk stratification of patients with suspected coronary artery disease, as our results show that the presence of NAFLD is associated with high-risk coronary plaque independent of traditional risk factors and severity of coronary artery disease."

The researchers plan to extend the study outside of the emergency department setting to see if the results apply to other categories of the general population. They also hope to learn more about why NAFLD is so prevalent among people with advanced high-risk coronary atherosclerosis. One prevailing theory is that both conditions are a consequence of systemic inflammation, an inflammatory state that affects multiple organs and can lead to life-threatening conditions.

"The aim will be to further investigate and understand, with the help of CCTA, the interplay between advanced atherosclerosis and NAFLD as part of a complex systemic inflammatory condition," Dr. Puchner said.

"High-Risk Coronary Plaque at Coronary CT Angiography Is Associated with Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, Independent of Coronary Plaque and Stenosis Burden." Collaborating with Dr. Puchner were Michael T. Lu, M.D., Thomas Mayrhofer, Ph.D., Ting Liu, M.D., Amit Pursnani, M.D., Brian B. Ghoshhajra, M.D., M.B.A., Quynh A. Truong, M.D., M.P.H., Stephen D. Wiviott, M.D., Jerome L. Fleg, M.D., Udo Hoffmann, M.D., M.P.H., and Maros Ferencik, M.D., Ph.D.

Radiology is edited by Herbert Y. Kressel, M.D., Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass., and owned and published by the Radiological Society of North America, Inc.

RSNA is an association of more than 54,000 radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical physicists and related scientists promoting excellence in patient care and health care delivery through education, research and technologic innovation. The Society is based in Oak Brook, Ill. (RSNA.org)

For patient-friendly information on CCTA, visit RadiologyInfo.org

Linda Brooks | EurekAlert!

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Norovirus evades immune system by hiding out in rare gut cells
12.10.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

nachricht Flexible sensors can detect movement in GI tract
11.10.2017 | Massachusetts Institute of Technology

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

Im Focus: New nanomaterial can extract hydrogen fuel from seawater

Hybrid material converts more sunlight and can weather seawater's harsh conditions

It's possible to produce hydrogen to power fuel cells by extracting the gas from seawater, but the electricity required to do it makes the process costly. UCF...

Im Focus: Small collisions make big impact on Mercury's thin atmosphere

Mercury, our smallest planetary neighbor, has very little to call an atmosphere, but it does have a strange weather pattern: morning micro-meteor showers.

Recent modeling along with previously published results from NASA's MESSENGER spacecraft -- short for Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

Conference Week RRR2017 on Renewable Resources from Wet and Rewetted Peatlands

28.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A single photon reveals quantum entanglement of 16 million atoms

16.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

The melting ice makes the sea around Greenland less saline

16.10.2017 | Earth Sciences

On the generation of solar spicules and Alfvenic waves

16.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>