The emerging role of ct-based imaging in adipose tissue and coronary inflammation

Jeremy Yuvaraj, Kevin Cheng, Andrew Lin, Peter J. Psaltis, Stephen J. Nicholls, Dennis T.L. Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


A large body of evidence arising from recent randomized clinical trials demonstrate the association of vascular inflammatory mediators with coronary artery disease (CAD). Vascular inflammation localized in the coronary arteries leads to an increased risk of CAD-related events, and produces unique biological alterations to local cardiac adipose tissue depots. Coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) provides a means of mapping inflammatory changes to both epi-cardial adipose tissue (EAT) and pericoronary adipose tissue (PCAT) as independent markers of coronary risk. Radiodensity or attenuation of PCAT on coronary CTA, notably, provides indirect quantification of coronary inflammation and is emerging as a promising non-invasive imaging im-plement. An increasing number of observational studies have shown robust associations between PCAT attenuation and major coronary events, including acute coronary syndrome, and ‘vulnerable’ atherosclerotic plaque phenotypes that are associated with an increased risk of the said events. This review outlines the biological characteristics of both EAT and PCAT and provides an overview of the current literature on PCAT attenuation as a surrogate marker of coronary inflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1196
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished or Issued - May 2021


  • Adipose tissue
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Computed tomography coronary angiography
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Coronary inflammation
  • Epicardial adipose tissue
  • Pericoronary adipose tissue

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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