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PhD ceremony Mr. R. Golestani: New targets in cardiovascular imaging

When:We 22-05-2013 at 12:45

PhD ceremony: Mr. R. Golestani, 12.45 uur, Academiegebouw, Broerstraat 5, Groningen

Dissertation: New targets in cardiovascular imaging

Promotor(s): prof. R.A.J.O. Dierckx, prof. C.J.A.M. Zeebregts

Faculty: Medical Sciences

The purpose of this dissertation was to develop and validate molecular imaging methods for visualization and measurement of molecular and cellular targets involved in atherosclerotic diseases. Potentials of cardiovascular molecular imaging were investigated in animal models of disease, ex vivo human carotid endarterectomy specimens, and abdominal aorta in individuals underwent vertebral fracture assessment.

The following aspects of molecular imaging of atherosclerotic disease were investigated in this thesis: 1) a novel method to visualize abundance of VEGF in human atherosclerotic plaque; 2) feasibility of microPET imaging of alpha5beta3 integrin using a recently developed RGD-containing tracer; 3) molecular imaging of cell-death-inhibitory effects of minocycline with apoptosis- and necrosis-detecting probes, and 4) the predictive value of abdominal aortic calcification for myocardial infarction, stroke, and transient ischemic attack.

We demonstrated promising imaging targets in preclinical and ex vivo studies for the evaluation of atherosclerotic disease. This potentially helps to advance the understanding of cardiovascular disease, design novel targeted imaging methods for better risk stratification of patients with atherosclerotic disease, and speed the drug discovery efforts that target disease progression. Availability of a noninvasive, sensitive, and specific molecular imaging technique would provide clinicians incremental value to the existing imaging modalities for assessment of individuals for cardiovascular risk.

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