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18F-Sodium Fluoride Uptake Is a Marker of Active Calcification and Disease Progression in Patients With Aortic Stenosis

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-378
Number of pages8
JournalCirculation: Cardiovascular Imaging
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2014



18F-Sodium fluoride (18F-NaF) and 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG) are promising novel biomarkers of disease activity in aortic stenosis. We compared 18F-NaF and 18F-FDG uptake with histological characterization of the aortic valve and assessed whether they predicted disease progression.

Methods and Results-

Thirty patients with aortic stenosis underwent combined positron emission and computed tomography using 18F-NaF and 18F-FDG radiotracers. In 12 patients undergoing aortic valve replacement surgery (10 for each tracer), radiotracer uptake (mean tissue/background ratio) was compared with CD68 (inflammation), alkaline phosphatase, and osteocalcin (calcification) immunohistochemistry of the excised valve. In 18 patients (6 aortic sclerosis, 5 mild, and 7 moderate), aortic valve computed tomography calcium scoring was performed at baseline and after 1 year. Aortic valve 18F-NaF uptake correlated with both alkaline phosphatase (r=0.65; P=0.04) and osteocalcin (r=0.68; P=0.03) immunohistochemistry. There was no significant correlation between 18F-FDG uptake and CD68 staining (r=-0.43; P=0.22). After 1 year, aortic valve calcification increased from 314 (193-540) to 365 (207-934) AU (P <0.01). Baseline 18F-NaF uptake correlated closely with the change in calcium score (r=0.66; P <0.01), and this improved further (r=0.75; P <0.01) when 18F-NaF uptake overlying computed tomography-defined macrocalcification was excluded. No significant correlation was noted between valvular 18F-FDG uptake and change in calcium score (r=-0.11; P=0.66).


18F-NaF uptake identifies active tissue calcification and predicts disease progression in patients with calcific aortic stenosis.

Clinical Trial Registration-

URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01358513.

    Research areas

  • fluorodeoxyglucose F18, calcification, physiologic, aortic valve stenosis, inflammation, positron-emission tomography, POSITRON-EMISSION-TOMOGRAPHY, ATHEROSCLEROTIC PLAQUE, VALVE CALCIFICATION, INFLAMMATION, PET/CT

ID: 15339410