Abstract 345: Is There Any Reproducible Correlation Between Coronary Artery Plaque Burden Assessed by Cardiac CT and Serum Levels of Inflammatory Biomarkers?
Background: The role of inflammation for the development of atherosclerosis is well established, but there is hardly any data on coronary plaque burden and serum levels of inflammatory biomarkers. As Multi Detector Computed Tomography (MDCT) is the only non-invasive technique that reliably permits the detection of coronary plaque, we sought to investigate the correlation between coronary plaque burden assessed by MDCT and the serum levels of cardiac biomarkers in a large patient series.
Methods: 145 patients (90 male, mean age 53±11y) with suspected coronary artery disease underwent DSCT (Siemens Somatom Definition). Blood samples were taken before scan, determining serum levels of Myeloperoxidase (MPO), Troponin T (TnT), N-terminal pro-BNP (ntBNP) and High Sensitivity-CRP (hsCRP). CT data sets were assessed with a dedicated software (Siemens Circulation), and coronary plaque burden was evaluated semi-automatically, calculating plaque composition (calcified, mixed, non-calcified) on the basis of curved multiplanar reconstructions.
Results: Laboratory values for all subgroups are given in table 1. Patients with coronary plaque detected by DSCT had significantly higher serum levels of biomarkers than patients without, except for TnT. Amongst patients with coronary plaque, there were no significant differences in serum concentrations of any marker except for hsCRP, that reached the lowest serum levels in patients with calcified plaque (1.9±1.8mg/l) and the highest in patients with non-calcified plaque, respectively (5.2±9.4mg/l, p<0.05 if compared to other subgroups).
Conclusion: The presence of coronary artery plaque in cardiac CT is related to increased serum levels of MPO, ntBNP and hsCRP. For different types of plaque, serum levels of cardiac biomarkers do not differ significantly, except for hsCRP, that reaches elevated serum levels in patients with non-calcified plaque and might be an indicator for ongoing vascular inflammation.