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BACKGROUND: Familial dyslipidemias of either heterozygous (heFH) or combined (FCH) type lead to accelerated atherogenesis and increased cardiovascular risk. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate in statin-naïve adult patients with familial dyslipidemias whether inflammatory activation and liver, spleen and bone marrow metabolic activity differ compared with normolipidemic subjects and between dyslipidemic groups. METHODS: Fourteen patients with FCH, 14 with heFH, and 14 normolipidemic individuals were enrolled. Serum lipids, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, and fibrinogen levels were measured, followed by 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron-emission tomography/computed tomography imaging. Radiotracer uptake in the aortic wall, spleen, bone marrow, and liver was quantified as tissue-to-background ratio (TBR). RESULTS: Patients with heFH had significantly higher low-density lipoprotein levels compared with those with FCH and controls (P < .001). However, aortic TBRs were higher in FCH compared with heFH patients and controls (P = .02 and P < .001, respectively). FCH patients exhibited higher FDG uptake in the spleen compared with controls (P = .05). In addition, FCH exhibited higher bone marrow FDG uptake compared with heFH patients and controls (P = .03 and P = .02, respectively). FCH had higher liver uptake compared with heFH patients and controls (P < .001 for both). Significant correlations were observed between inflammatory biomarkers and imaging indices as well as between aortic TBR and FDG uptake of hematopoietic organs and liver. CONCLUSIONS: Systemic, as well as vascular inflammation and spleen, bone marrow, and hepatic metabolic activity are increased in patients with FCH despite lower levels of low-density lipoprotein.

Original publication




Journal article


J Clin Lipidol

Publication Date





33 - 43


(18)FDG PET/CT, Bone marrow, Familial dyslipidemias, Spleen, Vascular inflammation