Associations between epicardial adipose tissue, subclinical atherosclerosis and high-density lipoprotein composition in type 1 diabetes

Cristina Colom, David Viladés, Montserrat Pérez-Cuellar, Rubén Leta, Andrea Rivas-Urbina, Gemma Carreras, Jordi Ordóñez-Llanos, Antonio Pérez, Jose Luis Sánchez-Quesada

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© 2018 The Author(s). Background: The pathophysiology of cardiovascular complications in people with type 1 diabetes (T1DM) remains unclear. An increase in epicardial adipose tissue (EAT) and alterations in the composition of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) are associated with coronary artery disease, but information on its relationship in T1DM is very limited. Our aim was to determine the association between EAT volume, subclinical atherosclerosis, and HDL composition in type 1 diabetes. Methods: Seventy-two long-term patients with T1DM without clinical atherosclerosis were analyzed. EAT volume and subclinical atherosclerosis were measured using cardiac computed tomography angiography. EAT was adjusted according to body surface to obtain an EAT index (iEAT). HDL composition was determined. Results: The mean iEAT was 40.47 ± 22.18 cc/m 2 . The bivariate analysis showed positive associations of the iEAT with gender, age, hypertension, dyslipidemia, smoking, body mass index, waist circumference, insulin dose, and triglyceride (P < 0.05). The iEAT correlated positively with small HDL, increased content of apolipoprotein (apo)A-II and apoC-III, and decreased content of apoE and free cholesterol. Multiple linear regression showed that age, apoA-II content in HDL, and waist circumference were independently associated with the iEAT. Fifty percent of the patients presented subclinical atherosclerotic lesions. These patients had a higher iEAT, and their HDL contained less cholesterol and more apoA-II and lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 than patients without subclinical atherosclerosis. Conclusion: Alterations in the composition of HDL in TIDM are associated with increased iEAT and the presence of subclinical atherosclerosis. We propose that these abnormalities of HDL composition could be useful to identify T1DM patients at highest cardiovascular risk.
Original languageEnglish
Article number156
JournalCardiovascular Diabetology
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2018


  • Apolipoproteins
  • Coronary atherosclerosis
  • Epicardial adipose tissue
  • High-density lipoprotein
  • Type 1 diabetes


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