Intraplaque calcification is a prominent feature of advanced atherosclerotic plaque development. Current clinical evidence suggests that the size of calcium deposit may confer different effects on plaque stability , , . Macro-calcified deposits (CT detected) are thought to confer plaque stability whereas micro-calcification ([18F]NaF PET detected) are thought to be a feature of high-risk ‘vulnerable’ plaques which are prone to rupture. Following on from the emerging role of micro-calcification in high risk plaques within the clinic , there is now an urgent need for preclinical atherosclerotic models with this feature to gain mechanistic insights and assess the impact of calcification-targeted therapies. Using a combination of invasive and ex vivo methods, ApoE−/− mice placed on an atherogenic diet have been shown to develop intraplaque calcification . Additionally, [18F]NaF PET/CT has been used to assess the impact of exercise on calcification in ApoE−/− mice on a western diet . In this study, we set out to determine if [18F]NaF PET/CT could be used to non-invasively detect and quantify micro-calficiation in the ApoE−/− high cholesterol diet (HCD) mouse model, and examine the temporal nature of this process.
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||IJC Heart and Vasculature|
|Early online date||15 Nov 2020|
|Publication status||Published - 31 Dec 2020|