Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Aizaz M., Moonen R.P.M., van der Pol J.A.J., Prieto C., Botnar R.M., Kooi M.E. (2020)

PET/MRI of atherosclerosis

Revista : Cardiovascular Diagnosis & Therapy
Volumen : 10
Número : 4
Páginas : 1120-1139
Tipo de publicación : ISI Ir a publicación


Myocardial infarction and stroke are the most prevalent global causes of death. Each year 15 million people worldwide die due to myocardial infarction or stroke. Rupture of a vulnerable atherosclerotic plaque is the main underlying cause of stroke and myocardial infarction. Key features of a vulnerable plaque are inflammation, a large lipid-rich necrotic core (LRNC) with a thin or ruptured overlying fibrous cap, and intraplaque hemorrhage (IPH). Noninvasive imaging of these features could have a role in risk stratification of myocardial infarction and stroke and can potentially be utilized for treatment guidance and monitoring. The recent development of hybrid PET/MRI combining the superior soft tissue contrast of MRI with the opportunity to visualize specific plaque features using various radioactive tracers, paves the way for comprehensive plaque imaging. In this review, the use of hybrid PET/MRI for atherosclerotic plaque imaging in carotid and coronary arteries is discussed. The pros and cons of different hybrid PET/MRI systems are reviewed. The challenges in the development of PET/MRI and potential solutions are described. An overview of PET and MRI acquisition techniques for imaging of atherosclerosis including motion correction is provided, followed by a summary of vessel wall imaging PET/MRI studies in patients with carotid and coronary artery disease. Finally, the future of imaging of atherosclerosis with PET/MRI is discussed.