Medical University Innsbruck is conducting an prospective-observational, explorative single-centre cohort study in 55 participants in order to to examine the atherosclerosis progression in coronary arteries compared to peripheral vessels (carotids, femoral arteries).
Atherosclerotic alterations in peripheral vessels (IMT, plaque volume, plaque morphology) will be measured with ultrasound (IMT measurements and 3D quantitative plaque volumetry), whereas atherosclerotic alterations in coronary arteries will be tested with cardiac computertomography (CT) (coronary artery calcium score, calcium volume score, plaque morphology).
A total of 55 patients without prior known established vascular diseases will be tested. Cardiac CT and ultrasonography will be performed initially. After 2 years follow-up CT and ultrasound examination will be performed to assess the changes in atherosclerotic burden. Initially and after two years plasma samples will be collected and tested for traditional and novel cardiovascular risk factors.
The primary endpoint of the planned study will be the correlation of the atherosclerotic progression between coronary arteries and peripheral arteries (carotids, femoral arteries).
Secondary endpoints will include the correlation of atherosclerotic progression with established (hypertension, smoking, diabetes, dyslipidemia) and novel risk factors (hsCRP, P-selectin, cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP), intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1), CETP TaqIb polymorphism), with cardiovascular event rate, and the additional predictive value of atherosclerotic progression compared to an established risk score (SCORE Card, FRS). Also plaque morphology will be compared between coronary arteries and peripheral vessels.