Increased epicardial adipose tissue volume in coronary artery calcium and coronary atherosclerosis: Possible role in inflammatory reaction

Chao Ping Wang, Lee Ren Yeh, Li Fen Lu, Hui Ling Hsu, Teng Hung Yu, Wei Chin Hung, Cheng An Chiu, I. Ting Tsai, Chih Ying Yang, Jer Yiing Houng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: Fat surrounding coronary arteries can aggravate coronary artery disease (CAD). To provide evidence for this concept, we sought to investigate the correlation between epicardial adipose tissue (EAT) volumes and risk factors, plasma visfatin levels, inflammatory biomarkers, and the quantity of coronary calcification and atherosclerosis. Methods: EAT volume was measured using cardiac multi-slice computed tomography. Coronary artery calcium (CAC) was determined by the Agatston Score, and plasma visfatin levels were measured by a competitive enzyme immunoassay. Results: Patients with CAC and coronary atherosclerosis had significantly larger EAT volumes than patients without CAC and coronary atherosclerosis. When the analysis was stratified according to diabetes status, the EAT volumes in CAC and coronary atherosclerosis patients, with or without type 2 diabetes, were significantly higher than those of their counterparts. Furthermore, the correlation of EAT volume and CAC remained statistically significant even after it was adjusted for body mass index (BMI). EAT volume was also associated with the Agatston calcium score, volume calcium score, Gensini score, and the Framingham Risk Score. An EAT volume > 200 cm 3was the strongest independent risk factor for CAC. An elevated EAT volume was also significantly correlated with elevated visfatin, triglycerides, high sensitivity C-reactive protein levels, total white blood cells, lymphocyte counts, and low high-density lipoprotein levels. Conclusion: Increased EAT volumes were associated with coronary atherosclerosis and CAC, independent of risk factors, and were correlated with several CAD inflammatory biomarkers. These data suggest that EAT may act through inflammatory reactions to play an important role in the pathogenesis of coronary atherosclerosis and CAC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalActa Cardiologica Sinica
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012


  • Atherosclerosis
  • Calcification
  • Epicardial adipose tissue volume
  • Inflammation
  • Visfatin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Increased epicardial adipose tissue volume in coronary artery calcium and coronary atherosclerosis: Possible role in inflammatory reaction'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this