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1.  Right Ventricular Structure is Associated with the Risk of Heart Failure and Cardiovascular Death: The MESA-Right Ventricle Study 
Circulation  2012;126(14):1681-1688.
Changes in right ventricular (RV) morphology are associated with morbidity and mortality in heart and lung disease. We examined the association of abnormal RV structure and function with the risk of heart failure (HF) or cardiovascular death in a population-based multiethnic sample free of clinical cardiovascular disease at baseline.
Methods and Results
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) performed cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) on 5098 participants between 2000–2002 with follow-up for incident heart failure and cardiovascular death (“death”) until January 2008. RV volumes and mass were available for 4204 participants. The study sample (N = 4,144) was 61.4 ± 10.1 years old and 47.6 % male. The presence of RV hypertrophy (increased RV mass) was associated with a more than twice the risk of heart failure or death after adjustment for demographics, body mass index, education, C-reactive protein level, hypertension, and smoking status (HR = 2.52, 95%CI 1.55–4.10, p < 0.001) and a doubling of risk (or more) with left ventricular mass at the mean value or lower (p for interaction = 0.05).
RV hypertrophy was associated with the risk of heart failure or death in a multi-ethnic population free of clinical cardiovascular disease at baseline.
PMCID: PMC3532921  PMID: 22932258
right ventricle; pulmonary heart disease; magnetic resonance imaging; pulmonary hypertension; survival
2.  Associations of cardiovascular risk factors, carotid intima-media thickness and left ventricular mass with inter-adventitial diameters of the common carotid artery: the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) 
Atherosclerosis  2011;218(2):344-349.
Common carotid artery inter-adventitial diameter (IAD) and intima-media thickness (IMT) are measurable by ultrasound. IAD may be associated with left ventricular mass (LV mass) while IMT is a marker of subclinical atherosclerosis. It is not clear if IAD is associated with LV mass after accounting for IMT and traditional cardiovascular risk factors.
IAD and IMT were measured on participants of the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) IMT progression study. A total of 5641 of the originally enrolled 6814 MESA participants were studied. LV mass was measured by magnetic resonance imaging. Multivariable linear regression was used with IAD as the outcome and adjustment for risk factors, as well as IMT and LV mass.
Traditional cardiovascular risk factors, height, weight and ethnicity were significantly associated with IAD. After adjustment for risk factors, a one mm difference in IMT was associated with a 1.802 mm (95% CI: 1.553, 2.051) higher mean IAD. A one gm difference in LV mass was associated with a 0.006 mm (95% CI: 0.005, 0.007) higher mean IAD. LV mass was independently associated with IAD after adjusting for cardiovascular risk factors and IMT. These associations were slightly different for men and women.
Inter-adventitial diameters are associated with left ventricular mass after adjusting for cardiovascular risk factors and IMT. IAD might serve as a surrogate for left ventricular mass and have predictive value for cardiovascular outcomes.
PMCID: PMC3186064  PMID: 21726862
carotid arteries; ultrasonics; hypertrophy; magnetic resonance imaging; remodeling; risk factors; left ventricle
3.  Sex and Race Differences in Right Ventricular Structure and Function: The MESA-Right Ventricle Study 
Circulation  2011;123(22):2542-2551.
Right ventricular (RV) morphology is an important predictor of outcomes in heart and lung disease, however determinants of RV anatomy have not been well-studied. We examined the demographic factors associated with RV morphology and function in a population-based multiethnic sample free of clinical cardiovascular disease.
Methods and Results
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) performed cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) on 5098 participants. RV volumes and mass were available for 4204 participants. Normative equations for RV parameters were derived using an allometric approach. The study sample (N = 4123) was 61.5 ± 10.1 years old and 47.5% male. Older age was associated with lower RV mass (~5% lower mass per decade) with larger age-related decrements in men than in women (p for interaction < 0.05). Older age was also associated with higher RV ejection fraction (RVEF), an association which differed between races/ethnicities (p for interaction ≤ 0.01). Overall, men had greater RV mass (~8%) and larger RV volumes than women, but had lower RVEF (4% in absolute terms) (p < 0.001). African Americans had lower RV mass than Caucasians (p ≤ 0.002), whereas Hispanics had higher RV mass (p ≤ 0.02). Using the derived normative equations, 7.3% (95%CI, 6.5–8.1%) met criteria for RV hypertrophy and 5.9% (95%CI, 5.2–6.6%) had RV dysfunction.
In conclusion, age, sex, and race are associated with significant differences in RV mass, RV volumes and RVEF, potentially explaining distinct responses of the RV to cardiopulmonary disease.
PMCID: PMC3111939  PMID: 21646505
right ventricle; pulmonary heart disease; magnetic resonance imaging; pulmonary hypertension
4.  Physical Activity and Right Ventricular Structure and Function 
Rationale: Intense exercise in elite athletes is associated with increased left ventricular (LV) and right ventricular (RV) mass and volumes. However, the effect of physical activity on the RV in an older community-based population is unknown.
Objectives: We studied the association between levels of physical activity in adults and RV mass and volumes.
Methods: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) performed cardiac magnetic resonance imaging on community-based participants without clinical cardiovascular disease. RV volumes were determined from manually contoured endocardial margins. RV mass was determined from the difference between epicardial and endocardial volumes multiplied by the specific gravity of myocardium. Metabolic equivalent–minutes/day were calculated from the self-reported frequency, duration, and intensity of physical activity.
Measurements and Main Results: The study sample (n = 1,867) was aged 61.8 ± 10 years, 48% male, 44% white, 27% African American, 20% Hispanic, and 9% Chinese. Higher levels of moderate and vigorous physical activity were linearly associated with higher RV mass (P = 0.02) after adjusting for demographics, anthropometrics, smoking, cholesterol, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and LV mass. Higher levels of intentional exercise (physical activity done for the sole purpose of conditioning or fitness) were nonlinearly associated with RV mass independent of LV mass (P = 0.03). There were similar associations between higher levels of physical activity and larger RV volumes.
Conclusions: Higher levels of physical activity in adults were associated with greater RV mass independent of the associations with LV mass; similar results were found for RV volumes. Exercise-associated RV remodeling may have important clinical implications.
PMCID: PMC3056232  PMID: 20813888
exercise; pulmonary heart disease; pulmonary hypertension; magnetic resonance imaging
5.  Matrix metalloproteinase-9 and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 are associated with right ventricular structure and function: The MESA-RV Study 
Elevated resistance and reduced compliance of the pulmonary vasculature increase right ventricular (RV) afterload. Local and systemic inflammation and haemostatic abnormalities are prominent in pulmonary vascular diseases. We hypothesized that plasma biomarker levels indicating greater inflammation and coagulability associated with pulmonary vascular disease would be associated with RV structure and function measured by cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) performed cardiac MRI among participants aged 45–84 years without clinical cardiovascular disease. We assessed the associations of RV mass, RV end-diastolic volume (RVEDV), RV stroke volume (RVSV) and RV ejection fraction (RVEF) with plasma measures of inflammation (matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-3 and -9, intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM)-1, tumour necrosis factor receptor (TNF-R1), and E-selectin) and thrombosis (plasminogen activator inhibitor (PAI)-1, tissue factor, tissue factor pathway inhibitor and CD40 ligand).The study sample included 731 subjects. Higher MMP-9 levels were associated with lower RV mass before and after adjustment for left ventricular (LV) mass (p = 0.008 and p = 0.044, respectively). Higher levels of MMP-9 and PAI-1 were also associated with smaller RVEDV (p<0.05). Higher PAI-1 levels were associated with lower RVEF even after adjustment for LV ejection fraction (p = 0.017). In conclusion, MMP-9 and PAI-1 are associated with changes in RV structure and function which could be potentially related to a subclinical increase in pulmonary vascular resistance.
PMCID: PMC3045574  PMID: 20923324
Inflammation; thrombosis; hypertension; pulmonary
6.  The Association of Pipe and Cigar Use with Cotinine Levels, Lung Function and Airflow Obstruction: a Cross-sectional Study 
Annals of internal medicine  2010;152(4):201-210.
Cigarette smoking is the major cause of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease but studies on the contribution of other smoking techniques are sparse.
We hypothesized that pipe and cigar smoking was associated with elevated cotinine levels, decrements in lung function and increased odds of airflow obstruction.
Cross-sectional study.
Population-based sample from six US communities.
The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) recruited men and women ages 45-84 years without clinical cardiovascular disease.
The MESA Lung Study measured spirometry following American Thoracic Society guidelines and urinary cotinine levels by immunoassay. Pipe-years and cigar-years were calculated as years from self-reported age of starting to quitting (or to current age among current users) × pipefuls or cigars per day.
Of 3,528 participants, 8% reported pipe smoking (median 15 pipe-years), 11% reported cigar smoking (median 6 cigar-years), and 52% reported cigarette smoking (median 18 pack-years). Self-reported current pipe and cigar smokers had elevated urinary cotinine levels compared to never smokers. Pipe-years were associated with decrements in the forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and cigar-years were associated with decrements in the FEV1 and the ratio of the FEV1 to the forced vital capacity. Participants who smoked pipes or cigars had an increased odds of airflow obstruction whether they had also smoked cigarettes (Odds ratio 3.43; 95% CI: 1.75, 6.71; P<0.001) or had never smoked cigarettes (Odds ratio 2.31; 95% CI: 1.04, 5.11; P=0.039) compared to participants with no smoking history.
Cross-sectional design.
Pipe and cigar smoking increased urinary cotinine levels and was associated with decrements in lung function and increased odds of airflow obstruction, even among participants who never smoked cigarettes.
PMCID: PMC2906916  PMID: 20157134
7.  Cardiac Cine MRI: Quantification of the Relationship Between Fast Gradient Echo and Steady-State Free Precession for Determination of Myocardial Mass and Volumes 
To determine the correlation function between the steady-state free precession (SSFP) and fast gradient echo (FGRE) cine MRI pulse sequences for measuring the myocardial mass and volumes.
Materials and Methods
Cardiac cine MRI examinations were acquired in 50 individuals (female: 35, male: 15, mean age 64.1 ± 9.1 years, range 48–83) using SSFP and FGRE cardiac pulse sequences.
The mean (standard deviation [SD]) left ventricular end diastolic volume measured by SSFP was significantly larger (4.5%) than by FGRE (p < 0.001); this was also the case for end systolic volume (15.0%, p < 0.001). The relationship between SSFP and FGRE measures were linear and highly correlated (p < 0.001) for both left ventricular end diastolic and end systolic volumes (r2 = 0.90 vs. 0.91, respectively). We determined linear regression models to estimate the SSFP values based on the FGRE measures. Slope (intercept) for ejection fraction, stroke volume, and cardiac output were 0.99 (−2.79), 0.77 (17.5), and 0.76 (1.29), respectively.
Linear relationships exist for key LV function parameters when comparing SSFP and FGRE cine MRI. These results indicate that existing databases and normal values for FGRE LV function may be converted to corresponding LV function values for SSFP MRI.
PMCID: PMC2671062  PMID: 18581356
magnetic resonance imaging; normal cardiac function; steady state free precession; fast gradient echo

Results 1-7 (7)