By Elvira Mambetisaeva, Sarah Leigh and Steve Humphries (Editor–in-Chief)
In their study of 1648 asymptomatic subjects with baseline coronary artery calcium (CAC) score of zero, Brodov et al examine the potential use of thoracic aortic calcium (TAC) scores for prediction of CAC in the future. From their results they were able to conclude that there is a correlation between CAC > 0 and TAC scores ≥ 100, therefore patients with extensive TAC (TAC ≥ 100) may merit earlier repeat scans than those with lower or zero TAC scores. Rifai et al commend this study in their invited commentary, pointing out that it is the first to establish thresholds of TAC for CAC conversion. They go on to outline the significance of these findings with respect to clinical decision making and suggest the development of a “warranty period” for such imaging techniques which will guide when further action needs to be taken.
In their beautifully illustrated review article, Martinez et al examines the diverse roles of the HDL receptor ecto-F1-ATPase coupled to purinergic P2Y receptors in the modulation of important metabolic and vascular functions of HDL, which may be relevant for the anti-atherogenic effects of HDL. They also outline the therapeutic strategies that are being examined to target this pathway with a view to treating atherosclerosis.