Coronary artery disease (CAD) continues to be the leading cause of morbidity and mortality globally. Although the etiological mechanisms for CAD have not been fully elucidated, however, most would agree that atherosclerotic plaques progressively narrow the coronary arteries are the earliest manifestations and the principal cause of CAD. The emergence of revolutionary imaging technologies such as cardiac CT angiography, noninvasive computed fractional flow reserve and intravascular ultrasound provided the possibility of detecting and monitoring phenotypes associated with subclinical atherosclerosis. Meanwhile, with the widespread use of high-throughput genotyping pipeline such as next-generation sequencing, combined with big data-driven solutions in bioinformatics, translating the emerging genetic technologies into clinical practice and, therefore, provide valuable insight into the CAD study. In this review, we briefly describe the latest noninvasive cardiac imaging techniques for atherosclerosis-related phenotypes’ detection, mainly focusing on the coronary artery calcification, plaque burden and stenosis. Furthermore, we highlight the state-of-the-art genotyping techniques and its application in the field of CAD translational study. Finally, we discuss the clinical relevance of genetics paired with noninvasive imaging in the setting of coronary artery atherosclerosis.
Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.