Abstract 20056: The Correlation Between Coronary Plaque Burden Assessed by Cardiac Computed Tomography and Serum Levels of Cardiac Troponin T
Background: High sensitive cardiac Troponin T (cTnT) is a predictor of death in patients with stable coronary artery disease (CAD). Thus, it might be an indicator of coronary plaque instability in patients with subclinical atherosclerosis. We sought to investigate the correlation between coronary plaque burden assessed by Computed Tomography (CT) and the serum levels of cTnT quantified by a conventional and a high sensitive assay.
Methods: 95 patients (74 male, mean age 59±11y) underwent Dual Source-CT (Siemens Somatom Definition) for the exclusion of CAD. Before scan, serum levels of cTnT were determined with a conventional (lower detection threshold 0.001 ng/ml) and a high-sensitive assay (lower detection limit 3 pg/ml). CT data sets were assessed with a dedicated software (Siemens Circulation) for presence and quantity of coronary plaques.
Results: Serum levels are given in the table below. For both assays, presence of coronary plaque lead to elevated serum levels of cTnT. Moreover, in patients with > 1 coronary plaque the highest serum levels of cTnT could be determined. However, this was statistically significant only for the high-sensitive assay (p=0.05 for pts with plaque vs. pts without and 0.03 for pts with > 1 plaque vs. pts without), whereas there was no statistical significance for comparison of any plaque subgroup if measured with the conventional assay (p=0.15 for pts with plaque vs. pts without and 0.1 for pts with > 1 plaque vs. pts without, respectively). Furthermore, patients with only one coronary plaque did not have elevated serum levels of cTnT if compared to those without, irrespective of the assay used.
Conclusion: The presence of coronary plaque is related to a significant increase of cTnT serum levels, if a high-sensitive immunoassay is used. However, there is no consistent elevation of cTnT in presence of coronary plaque in general, putting the the role of cardiac TnT for the detection of coronary plaque into perspective.
- © 2010 by American Heart Association, Inc.