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Background: Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) radiomics analysis provides multiple quantifiers of ventricular shape and myocardial texture, which may be used for detailed cardiovascular phenotyping. Objectives: We studied variation in CMR radiomics phenotypes by age and sex in healthy UK Biobank participants. Then, we examined independent associations of classical vascular risk factors (VRFs: smoking, diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol) with CMR radiomics features, considering potential sex and age differential relationships. Design: Image acquisition was with 1.5 Tesla scanners (MAGNETOM Aera, Siemens). Three regions of interest were segmented from short axis stack images using an automated pipeline: right ventricle, left ventricle, myocardium. We extracted 237 radiomics features from each study using Pyradiomics. In a healthy subset of participants (n = 14,902) without cardiovascular disease or VRFs, we estimated independent associations of age and sex with each radiomics feature using linear regression models adjusted for body size. We then created a sample comprising individuals with at least one VRF matched to an equal number of healthy participants (n = 27,400). We linearly modelled each radiomics feature against age, sex, body size, and all the VRFs. Bonferroni adjustment for multiple testing was applied to all p-values. To aid interpretation, we organised the results into six feature clusters. Results: Amongst the healthy subset, men had larger ventricles with dimmer and less texturally complex myocardium than women. Increasing age was associated with smaller ventricles and greater variation in myocardial intensities. Broadly, all the VRFs were associated with dimmer, less varied signal intensities, greater uniformity of local intensity levels, and greater relative presence of low signal intensity areas within the myocardium. Diabetes and high cholesterol were also associated with smaller ventricular size, this association was of greater magnitude in men than women. The pattern of alteration of radiomics features with the VRFs was broadly consistent in men and women. However, the associations between intensity based radiomics features with both diabetes and hypertension were more prominent in women than men. Conclusions: We demonstrate novel independent associations of sex, age, and major VRFs with CMR radiomics phenotypes. Further studies into the nature and clinical significance of these phenotypes are needed.

Original publication




Journal article


Frontiers in cardiovascular medicine

Publication Date





National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Barts Biomedical Research Centre, William Harvey Research Institute, Queen Mary University of London, London, United Kingdom.