Abstract 5822: Atherosclerotic Plaque Inflammation Synchronize With Inflammatory Activity OF Visceral Fat
Background: Visceral adipose tissue is thought to confer increased cardiovascular risk through leukocyte infiltration and increased adipose macrophage activity. Previous positron emission tomography (PET) studies using fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) demonstrated that increased FDG uptake could reflect the severity of inflammation in atherosclerotic plaque. We hypothesized that active atherosclerotic change in the major arteries would accompany increased inflammation within visceral fat and it could be detected in humans using combined FDG PET/computed tomography (CT).
Methods: We observed 44 consecutive subjects with cardiovascular disease. For all of them, an one-hour PET/CT (from brain to foot) was performed after injection of FDG (370–555 MBq). FDG uptake in the aorta or its major branches was evaluated visually and semiquantitatively. Maximal standard uptake values (SUV) of the highest regions of interest were calculated in the subcutaneous fat and visceral fat area, separately.
Results: Significant FDG uptake in the arterial wall was noted in 21 patients (plaque positive; PP group), all of whom have experienced acute cardiovascular events (acute coronary syndrome or ischemic stroke) within a week. The other 23 patients (plaque negative; PN group) had chronic stable angina or asymptomatic carotid stenosis. Visceral fat SUV was significantly higher as compared to subcutaneous fat SUV (0.49± 0.15 vs. 0.15± 0.05, p< 0.001) in PP group, whereas there was no significant difference in PN group (0.18± 0.07 vs. 0.16± 0.03, p= 0.622). When we compared two groups, PP group showed higher visceral fat SUV than PN group (p< 0.001). In terms of subcutaneous fat SUV, the results were similar in two groups (p= 0.773).
Conclusions: We demonstrated that atherosclerotic plaque inflammation was associated with increased inflammation within visceral fat. Our results need to be confirmed by comparison with histologic or other imaging findings. Further evaluation to determine whether metabolic activity of visceral adipose tissue is a marker or mediator of vascular inflammation is also needed.