Pericardial fat as a visceral fat depot may be involved in the pathogenesis of coronary atherosclerosis. To gain evidence for that concept we sought to investigate the relation of pericardial fat volumes to risk factors, serum adiponectin levels, inflammatory biomarkers, and the quantity and morphology of coronary atherosclerosis.Using Dual source CT angiography pericardial fat volume and coronary atherosclerosis were assessed simultaneously. Plaques were classified as calcified, mixed, and noncalcified, and the number of affected segments served as quantitative score. Patients with atherosclerotic lesions had significant larger PAT volumes (226 cm3+/-92 cm3) than patients without atherosclerosis (134 cm3+/-56 cm3; P>0.001). No association was found between BMI and coronary atherosclerosis. PAT volumes >300 cm3 were the strongest independent risk factor for coronary atherosclerosis (odds ratio 4.1; CI 3.63 to 4.33) also significantly stronger compared to the Framingham score. We furthermore demonstrated that elevated PAT volumes are significantly associated with low adiponectin levels, low HDL levels, elevated TNF-alpha levels, and hsCRP.In the present study we demonstrated that elevated PAT volumes are associated with coronary atherosclerosis, hypoadiponectinemia, and inflammation and represent the strongest risk factor for the presence of atherosclerosis and may be important for risk stratification and monitoring.
View details for DOI 10.1161/ATVBAHA.108.180653
View details for Web of Science ID 000265230700028
View details for PubMedID 19229071