17 March 2015 Evaluation of a targeted nanobubble ultrasound contrast agent for potential tumor imaging
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Targeted nanobubbles have been reported to improve the contrast effect of ultrasound imaging due to the enhanced permeation and retention effects at tumor vascular leaks. In this work, the contrast enhancement abilities and the tumor targeting potential of a self-made VEGFR2-targeted nanobubble ultrasound contrast agent was evaluated in-vitro and in-vivo. Size distribution and zeta potential were assessed. Then the contrast-enhanced ultrasound imaging of the VEGFR2 targeted nanobubbles were evaluated with a custom-made experimental apparatus and in normal Wistar rats. Finally, the in-vivo tumor-targeting ability was evaluated on nude mice with subcutaneous tumor. The results showed that the target nanobubbles had uniform distribution with the average diameter of 208.1 nm, polydispersity index (PDI) of 0.411, and zeta potential of -13.21 mV. Significant contrast enhancement was observed in both in-vitro and in-vivo ultrasound imaging, demonstrating that the self-made target nanobubbles can enhance the contrast effect of ultrasound imaging efficiently. Targeted tumor imaging showed less promising result, due to the fact that the targeted nanobubbles arriving and permeating through tumor vessels were not many enough to produce significant enhancement. Future work will focus on exploring new imaging algorithm which is sensitive to targeted nanobubbles, so as to correctly detect the contrast agent, particularly at a low bubble concentration.
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Chunfang Li, Chunfang Li, Chunxu Shen, Chunxu Shen, Haijuan Liu, Haijuan Liu, Kaizhi Wu, Kaizhi Wu, Qibing Zhou, Qibing Zhou, Mingyue Ding, Mingyue Ding, "Evaluation of a targeted nanobubble ultrasound contrast agent for potential tumor imaging", Proc. SPIE 9417, Medical Imaging 2015: Biomedical Applications in Molecular, Structural, and Functional Imaging, 941715 (17 March 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2081791; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2081791

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