The purpose of this study was to measure changes in cardiac function as cardiomyopathy progresses in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy using 3-D ECG-gated echocardiography. This study is the first to correlate cardiac volumes acquired using 3-D echocardiography with those acquired using retrospectively gated micro-computed tomography (CT). Both were further compared with standard M-mode echocardiography and histologic analyses. We found that although each modality measures a decrease in cardiac function as disease progresses in mdx/utrn(-/-) mice (n = 5) compared with healthy C57BL/6 mice (n = 8), 3-D echocardiography has higher agreement with gold-standard measurements acquired by gated micro-CT, with little standard deviation between measurements. M-Mode echocardiography measurements, in comparison, exhibit considerably greater variability and user bias. Given the radiation dose associated with micro-CT and the geometric assumptions made in M-mode echocardiography to calculate ventricular volume, we suggest that use of 3-D echocardiography has important advantages that may allow for the measurement of early disease changes that occur before overt cardiomyopathy.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/dr-lisa-hoffman/1/