Development and analysis of radiolabeled magnetic nanoparticles for positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance imaging
Glaus, Charles R. M.
MetadataShow full item record
Nanoparticles possess unique characteristics that make them well suited for molecular imaging. Particles can be synthesized in a systematic fashion with tight control over diameter and surface chemistry. Contrary to existing gadolinium-based MRI contrast agents, nanoparticle MRI contrast agents circulate in the blood for long periods of time, offer higher sensitivity, and exhibit little known toxicity. The qualities of nanoparticles are also well suited to the design of PET probes. Because of their large surface area nanoparticles can be radiolabeled at high specific activity, increasing the sensitivity of detection as well as the payload of therapeutic isotopes. The work presented here focuses on the development and biological application of novel radiolabeled magnetic nanoparticles for multimodal PET/MRI imaging. The nanoparticle probes contained crystalline iron oxide cores capable of producing strong MRI contrast. Cores were coated with either a micelle composed of functionalized PEGylated lipids, or a cross-linked dextran shell modified with heterobifuntional PEG polymers. For PET imaging, magnetic nanoparticles were labeled with the radionuclide 64Cu. Copper‐64 is a cyclotron produced positron emitter used for PET imaging. With a 12.7 hour half-life, 64Cu can be used to image particles in vivo for up to 48 hr and can be used to evaluate ex vivo biodistribution for 72 hours. 64Cu nuclides also undergo β‐ decay, making it a useful isotope for radiotherapy. Nanoparticles were labeled with 64Cu and PET and MRI contrast and evaluated using phantoms. Pharmacokinetic information was measured using in vivo small animal PET/CT and ex vivo biodistribution at multiple time points. Particles were targeted to the angiogenesis marker αvβ3 integrin using a cyclized arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD) peptide with high affinity for αvβ3 and tested in two tumor models. A unilateral tumor model was constructed using the αvβ3-positive U87MG glioblastoma line, and a bilateral model was constructed using the M21 (αvβ3 positive) and M21L (αvβ3 negative) melanoma lines. In vivo PET/CT and MRI showed that targeted nanoparticles produced both PET and MRI contrast in tumors. In conclusion, we report the development of magnetic nanoparticles for dual‐PET/MR imaging. These findings provide insight into the design and development of future multimodality PET/MRI probes.