Approach

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Imaging

Ultra-pH-sensitive (UPS), fluorescent nanoprobe-based nanoparticles for tumor imaging

UPS, fluorescent nanoparticles could be used to specifically label tumors in vivo. UPS, fluorescent nanoprobes were designed that self-assembled to form micelle-like nanoparticles lacking fluorescence because of fluorophore quenching. In mice with glycolytic lung cancer tumors, i.v. injection of the nanoparticles led to uptake and dissociation of the nanoparticle in the tumor and activated a strong fluorescent signal that could be used for tumor imaging. In mice with angiogenic lung tumors, i.v. injection of RGD peptide-modified nanoparticles led to uptake and dissociation by integrin aVb3 (CD51/CD61)-mediated endocytosis, activating a strong fluorescent signal that could be used for tumor imaging. Similar imaging results for the nanoparticle method were obtained in 10 different mouse models of cancer with diverse phenotypes and organ sites. Next steps include obtaining safety data and translating the technology for fluorescence-guided surgical resection of solid tumors (see Light it up, page 1).

SciBX 7(1); doi:10.1038/scibx.2014.37
Published online Jan. 9, 2014

Patent application filed; available for licensing

Wang, Y. et al. Nat. Mater.; published online Dec. 8, 2013;
doi:10.1038/nmat3819
Contact: Jinming Gao, The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas
e-mail:

jinming.gao@utsouthwestern.edu