Cardiac function and lipid distribution in rats fed a high-fat diet: in vivo magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy Vijayasarathi Nagarajan, Venkatesh Gopalan, Manami Kaneko, Veronique Angeli, Peter Gluckman, Arthur Mark Richards, Philip W. Kuchel, and S. Sendhil Velan American Journal of Physiology-Heart and Circulatory Physiology 2013 304:11, H1495-H1504
Obesity is a major risk factor in the development of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and its pathophysiological precondition insulin resistance. Very little is known about the metabolic changes that occur in the myocardium and consequent changes in cardiac function that are associated with high-fat accumulation. Therefore, cardiac function and metabolism were evaluated in control rats and those fed a high-fat diet, using magnetic resonance imaging, magnetic resonance spectroscopy, mRNA analysis, histology, and plasma biochemistry. Analysis of blood plasma from rats fed the high-fat diet showed that they were insulin resistant (P < 0.001). Our high-fat diet model had higher heart weight (P = 0.005) and also increasing trend in septal wall thickness (P = 0.07) compared with control diet rats. Our results from biochemistry, magnetic resonance imaging, and mRNA analysis confirmed that rats on the high-fat diet had moderate diabetes along with mild cardiac hypertrophy. The magnetic resonance spectroscopy results showed the extramyocellular lipid signal only in the spectra from high-fat diet rats, which was absent in the control diet rats. The intramyocellular lipids in high-fat diet rats was higher (8.7%) compared with rats on the control diet (6.1%). This was confirmed by electron microscope and light microscopy studies. Our results indicate that lipid accumulation in the myocardium might be an early indication of the cardiovascular pathophysiology associated with type 2 diabetes.
This research was supported by the intramural funding from Singapore Bioimaging Consortium and Singapore Institute of Clinical Sciences, A*STAR, Singapore.
The full paper is available for free download the the publisher's URL: https://doi.org/10.1152/ajpheart.00478.2012