- Oral presentation
- Open Access
In vivo characterization of abdominal aortic aneurysms using an elastin specific molecular MR probe
© Makowski et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2014
- Published: 16 January 2014
- Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
- Aortic Wall
- Elastic Fiber
- Probe Offer
- Rupture Site
Rupture of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs) is the third most common cause of death in cardiovascular diseases. Despite this high significance, there is still controversy regarding the management of AAAs, as diameter is currently the only accepted parameter to assess risk of rupture. Elastin is the key protein for maintaining stability of the aortic wall. The aim of this study was to evaluate a novel small-molecular-weight elastin-specific MR probe for the in-vivo assessment of aortic wall integrity in AAAs.
ApoE-knockout-mice (ApoE-/-) were infused with angiotensin-II (Ang-II) for up to four weeks (1000 ng/kg/min) to induce AAA formation. An elastin-specific MR probe (Lantheus Medical Imaging, USA) was administered 1, 2, 3 and 4 weeks following Ang-II infusion. Mice were scanned at each time point pre, post control agent (Gd-DTPA) and after administration of the elastin-specific probe. Imaging was performed using a 3T Philips-Achieva MR-scanner equipped with a microscopy coil. Imaging parameters of 3D IR-MRI: spatial resolution = 0.1 × 0.1 mm, 0.5 mm slice-thickness, TR/TE = 28/8.2 ms. Additionally 3D-T1 mapping was performed. Ex-vivo tissue samples were analysed by inductively-coupled-plasma mass-spectroscopy (ICP-MS), histological staining and electron microscopy.
The elastin-specific molecular MR probe allows for the visualization and quantification of changes in elastin content at different stages of AAAs. This clinically translatable probe offers potential for the non-invasive detection of rupture sites prior to aortic dilation and subsequent monitoring of compensatory repair processes. This could enable a more accurate risk stratification and help guiding treatment decisions.
This study was funded by the British Heart Foundation (PG/09/061).
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