Association of Liver Fibrosis with Cardiovascular Diseases in the General Population: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA)

Mohammad R. Ostovaneh, Bharath Ambale-Venkatesh, Tomoki Fuji, Hooman Bakhshi, Ravi Shah, Venkatesh L. Murthy, Russell P. Tracy, Eliseo Guallar, Colin O. Wu, David Alan Bluemke, João A.C. Lima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Background - The association of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) with liver fibrosis is poorly understood. We aim to assess the association of liver fibrosis by T1-mapping magnetic resonance imaging and CVD in MESA (Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis). Methods and Results - MESA enrolled 6814 participants free of clinical CVD at baseline (2000-2002). A subsample of participants underwent T1-mapping magnetic resonance imaging 10 years after the baseline (Y10 MESA exam, 2010-2012). Liver T1 maps were generated avoiding vessels and biliary ducts from which native T1 (n=2087) and extracellular volume fraction (ECV, n=1234) were determined. Higher ECV and native T1 were indicators of liver fibrosis. Linear regression analysis evaluated the cross-sectional relationship between liver native T1 and ECV at Y10 MESA exam with a history of CVD events (atrial fibrillation, heart failure, and coronary heart disease [CHD]). Of the 2087 participants (68.7±9.1 years; 46% females), 153 had prior CVD events (78 atrial fibrillation, 25 heart failure, and 78 CHD). History of CVD events was associated with 18.5 ms higher liver native T1 (P<0.001) and 1.4% greater ECV (P=0.06). Prior atrial fibrillation was related to higher liver native T1 (β=21.1; P=0.001) and greater ECV (β=2.2; P=0.02), whereas previous heart failure was associated with greater liver ECV (β=4.1; P=0.02). There was also a relationship of prior CHD with liver native T1 (β=13; P=0.05) and ECV (β=1.9; P=0.05), which was attenuated by adjustment for coronary artery calcium score (β=7.1 and 1.6; P=0.37 and 0.13, respectively). Conclusions - Liver fibrosis by T1-mapping magnetic resonance imaging is associated with history of heart failure, atrial fibrillation, and CHD in a multiethnic cohort. The association of liver fibrosis and CHD is at least in part mediated by atherosclerosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number007241
JournalCirculation: Cardiovascular Imaging
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018


  • cardiovascular diseases
  • fibrosis
  • inflammation
  • liver disease
  • population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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