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Optical measurement of arterial mechanical properties: from atherosclerotic plaque initiation to rupture.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Biomedical Optics
1560-2281
Publisher
SPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication Date
Volume
18
Issue
12
Pages
121507–121507
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1117/1.JBO.18.12.121507
PMID: 24296995
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

During the pathogenesis of coronary atherosclerosis, from lesion initiation to rupture, arterial mechanical properties are altered by a number of cellular, molecular, and hemodynamic processes. There is growing recognition that mechanical factors may actively drive vascular cell signaling and regulate atherosclerosis disease progression. In advanced plaques, the mechanical properties of the atheroma influence stress distributions in the fibrous cap and mediate plaque rupture resulting in acute coronary events. This review paper explores current optical technologies that provide information on the mechanical properties of arterial tissue to advance our understanding of the mechanical factors involved in atherosclerosis development leading to plaque rupture. The optical approaches discussed include optical microrheology and traction force microscopy that probe the mechanical behavior of single cell and extracellular matrix components, and intravascular imaging modalities including laser speckle rheology, optical coherence elastography, and polarization-sensitive optical coherence tomography to measure the mechanical properties of advanced coronary lesions. Given the wealth of information that these techniques can provide, optical imaging modalities are poised to play an increasingly significant role in elucidating the mechanical aspects of coronary atherosclerosis in the future.

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