Cardiovascular Imaging and Population Studies

Investigators Valentín Fuster, Javier Sanz (CNIC, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai), José María Castellano (CNIC, Hospital Universitario HM Monte Príncipe), Antonio Fernández-Ortíz (CNIC, Hospital Clínico San Carlos), Leticia Fernández Friera (CNIC, Hospital Universitario HM Monte Príncipe), Beatriz López-Melgar (CNIC, Hospital Universitario HM Puerta del Sur), Inés García Lunar (CNIC, Hospital Universitario Quirónsalud Madrid), Ana García Álvarez (CNIC, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona), Silvia Martín Puig, Ana García Álvarez, Marta Cortés Canteli (Miguel Servet Researcher).

Our group has developed research applications for noninvasive, high-resolution and high-sensitivity imaging technologies to support translational research and population studies in preclinical atherosclerosis. We collaborate with other CNIC investigators, offering support in translational research in the use of basic cardiovascular imaging techniques. Our main noninvasive bioimaging population studies for early detection and progression of atherosclerosis, PESA and AWHS are clinical trials designed to identify new imaging, lifestyle habits as well as genetic, metabolic, and proteic factors identified by omics which are associated with the presence and progression of atherosclerosis in middle aged adult populations.

The PESA (Progression of Early Subclinical Atherosclerosis) study has moved into Phase II follow-up at 3 years for 4000 participants aged 40-54 years. In this second phase, we look for changes in the systemic extent of atherosclerosis and its association with factors that were detected in the recruitment phase, three years earlier. The studies include the analysis of systemic subclinical atherosclerosis through multi-territory 2D/3D ultrasound and the detection of coronary calcium CT. We also continue to analyze the influence of lifestyle, omics, known risk factors, analytical blood and urine, as well as changes in timing. To analyze the prognostic value of local plaque inflammatory markers, a group of nearly 1000 participants with atherosclerosis at baseline has been evaluated by 18FDG PET/MRI. Follow-up at 3 and 6 years enables us to determine which factors predict the progression of atherosclorosis in a middle aged population, and long-term monitoring will reveal new prognostic markers for events.