Gnificance between groups was assessed using (paired) t-test, one-way analysis of

Gnificance between groups was assessed using (paired) t-test, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), followed by a Bonferroni correction for multiple testing in case of significance. [DTrp6]-LH-RH Results were considered statistically significant at p,0.05.Effect of Statin Treatment on Aortic Plaque and Vessel StiffnessWe assessed whether the effects of statin therapy could be observed both on plaque level as well as the stiffness of the aortic arch in ApoE2/2 mice. In aged ApoE2/2 mice treated for 12 weeks with a Western diet supplemented with atorvastatin plaques CNR changes were significantly smaller both in micelle injected mice (Figure 6A1 CNR, 6A2 DCNR) as well as USPIO injected mice (Figure 6B1 CNR, 6B2 DCNR) compared to age-matched untreated mice.Results Self-Gated CINE MRI in Cardiovascular Unstable AnimalsAll mice included in these experiments had a relatively low variation in heart rate and respiratory rate throughout theMRI of Plaque Burden and Vessel Wall StiffnessDiameter of the aortic arch in mm was measured at end-diastole and end-systole measured in all 3 ApoE2/2 treatment groups (Figure 6C). The diameter at both end-diastole and end-systole was significantly decreased in the 12-months-old statin-treated mice compared to the untreated 12-months-old animals, yet still significantly higher than in the young mice. The average maximal circumferential strain calculated during the cardiac cycle shows a decrease with age (Figure 6D). A statistically significant lower decrease in strain was noted after statin treatment.Correlation between MRI Contrast Enhancement, Aortic Stiffness and Histological Plaque AreaThe plaque area in the inner curvature of the aortic arch was independently determined using histology. The anatomical position of the plaques found on MR images corresponds to the areas observed by lipid staining with Oil Red O (Figure 7A 7B). The plaque lesion sizes for the different groups are shown in Figure 7C. The plaque size was smallest for the young animals, largest for the aged animals. After statin treatment, the plaque size was reduced by 28.5 , but still significantly larger than in young ApoE2/2 mice. Using an anti-Gd-DTPA staining, the presence of micelles could be detected in distinct plaque areas: at the inner curvature of the aortic arch and in the intima of the vessel wall, in line with our MRI results. In contrast, the hypointense plaque regions due to iron-oxide accumulations mainly occurred in the plaque core, which was confirmed by Prussian Blue staining (Figure 7D 7E). Contrast enhancement on MRI for individual animals correlated very well (p,0.01) with the lesion size as determined with histology (Figure 7F1 micelles, F2 USPIOs), also after statin treatment, with an R2 of 0.4203 and 0.7822 for the Gd-micelles and the USPIO respectively. The circumferential strain showed a linear correlation with plaque size, as determined by histology (Figure 7G), with an R2 of 0.6465 (p,0.01) respectively. Lastly, linear regression showed that the circumferential strain was also correlated to the CNR after contrast agent administration (Figure 7H1 micelles, R2 0.4133 p,0.05 and 7H2 USPIO R2 0.3790, p,0.05).and as a consequence the influence of the imaging session on animal welfare will be higher. Therefore, the use of a JW 74 site retrospective-gated CINE MRI sequence provides distinct advantages over a triggered CINE or single-frame sequence. Firstly, the maintenance of steady state saturation of the retrospective-gated sequence helped.Gnificance between groups was assessed using (paired) t-test, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), followed by a Bonferroni correction for multiple testing in case of significance. Results were considered statistically significant at p,0.05.Effect of Statin Treatment on Aortic Plaque and Vessel StiffnessWe assessed whether the effects of statin therapy could be observed both on plaque level as well as the stiffness of the aortic arch in ApoE2/2 mice. In aged ApoE2/2 mice treated for 12 weeks with a Western diet supplemented with atorvastatin plaques CNR changes were significantly smaller both in micelle injected mice (Figure 6A1 CNR, 6A2 DCNR) as well as USPIO injected mice (Figure 6B1 CNR, 6B2 DCNR) compared to age-matched untreated mice.Results Self-Gated CINE MRI in Cardiovascular Unstable AnimalsAll mice included in these experiments had a relatively low variation in heart rate and respiratory rate throughout theMRI of Plaque Burden and Vessel Wall StiffnessDiameter of the aortic arch in mm was measured at end-diastole and end-systole measured in all 3 ApoE2/2 treatment groups (Figure 6C). The diameter at both end-diastole and end-systole was significantly decreased in the 12-months-old statin-treated mice compared to the untreated 12-months-old animals, yet still significantly higher than in the young mice. The average maximal circumferential strain calculated during the cardiac cycle shows a decrease with age (Figure 6D). A statistically significant lower decrease in strain was noted after statin treatment.Correlation between MRI Contrast Enhancement, Aortic Stiffness and Histological Plaque AreaThe plaque area in the inner curvature of the aortic arch was independently determined using histology. The anatomical position of the plaques found on MR images corresponds to the areas observed by lipid staining with Oil Red O (Figure 7A 7B). The plaque lesion sizes for the different groups are shown in Figure 7C. The plaque size was smallest for the young animals, largest for the aged animals. After statin treatment, the plaque size was reduced by 28.5 , but still significantly larger than in young ApoE2/2 mice. Using an anti-Gd-DTPA staining, the presence of micelles could be detected in distinct plaque areas: at the inner curvature of the aortic arch and in the intima of the vessel wall, in line with our MRI results. In contrast, the hypointense plaque regions due to iron-oxide accumulations mainly occurred in the plaque core, which was confirmed by Prussian Blue staining (Figure 7D 7E). Contrast enhancement on MRI for individual animals correlated very well (p,0.01) with the lesion size as determined with histology (Figure 7F1 micelles, F2 USPIOs), also after statin treatment, with an R2 of 0.4203 and 0.7822 for the Gd-micelles and the USPIO respectively. The circumferential strain showed a linear correlation with plaque size, as determined by histology (Figure 7G), with an R2 of 0.6465 (p,0.01) respectively. Lastly, linear regression showed that the circumferential strain was also correlated to the CNR after contrast agent administration (Figure 7H1 micelles, R2 0.4133 p,0.05 and 7H2 USPIO R2 0.3790, p,0.05).and as a consequence the influence of the imaging session on animal welfare will be higher. Therefore, the use of a retrospective-gated CINE MRI sequence provides distinct advantages over a triggered CINE or single-frame sequence. Firstly, the maintenance of steady state saturation of the retrospective-gated sequence helped.