MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. W.H. Wilson Tang M.D.
Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine (NC10)
Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute
Cleveland, Ohio 44195
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: Our group has recently described the mechanistic link between intestinal microbe-generated phosphatidylcholine metabolite, trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO), and the pathogenesis of atherosclerotic coronary artery disease (CAD) and its adverse clinical outcomes. Here in a separate, independent, contemporary cohort of patients undergoing coronary angiography, we demonstrated the association between elevated fasting TMAO levels and quantitative atherosclerotic burden (as measured by SYNTAX and SYNTAX II scores) in stable cardiac patients and is an independent predictor for the presence of diffuse (but not focal) lesion characteristics.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: In a validation cohort that substantial findings from our animal and human studies, higher TMAO levels can predict the presence of increased atherosclerotic burden and complexity.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Response: Further research is needed to determine whether interventions that improve plasma TMAO levels also improve atherosclerosis burden and progression of CAD.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: Since TMAO is generated via a complex microbial-host pathway, it is conceivable that excessive consumption of specific dietary nutrients may induce intestinal microbiota-associated increase in circulating TMAO levels, which may in part explain its association increased atherosclerotic burden.
MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.
J Am Coll Cardiol. 2016;67(22):2620-2628. doi:10.1016/j.jacc.2016.03.546.
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