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Deep cardiac phenotyping by cardiovascular magnetic resonance reveals subclinical focal and diffuse myocardial injury in patients with psoriasis (PSOR-COR study).

BACKGROUND: Psoriasis vulgaris (PV) is a chronic inflammatory disorder frequently associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD). This study aims to provide a prospective tissue characterization in patients with PV without major CVD using cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR).

METHODS: Patients with PV underwent laboratory assessment, a 12-lead and 24-h ECG, and a CMR exam at a 1.5-T scanner. Scan protocol included assessment of left (LV) and right (RV) ventricular function and strain analysis, native and post-contrast T1 mapping, T2 mapping and late gadolinium enhancement (LGE).

RESULTS: In total, 60 PV patients (median(IQR) age in years: 50.0 (36.0-60.8); 34 men (56.7%)) were recruited and compared to 40 healthy volunteers (age in years: 49.5 (37.3-57.8); 21 men (53.0%)). No differences were found regarding LV and RV function (p = 0.78 and p = 0.75). Global radial and circumferential strains were lower in patients (p < 0.001 and p < 0.001, respectively). PV had higher global T1 times (1001 (982-1026) ms vs. 991 (968-1005) ms; p = 0.01) and lower global T2 times (48 (47-49) ms vs. 50 (48-51) ms; p < 0.001); however, all values were within local reference ranges. Focal non-ischemic fibrosis was observed in 17 (28.3%) PV patients.

CONCLUSION: Deep cardiac phenotyping by CMR revealed subclinical myocardial injury in patients with PV without major CVD, despite preserved LV and RV function. Diffuse and focal fibrosis might be the first detectable signs of adverse tissue remodeling leading to reduced circumferential and radial myocardial deformation. In the background of local and systemic immunomodulatory therapy, no signs of myocardial inflammation were detected. The exact impact of immunomodulatory therapies on the myocardium needs to be addressed in future studies.

STUDY REGISTRATION: ISRCTN71534700.

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