Monitoring of magnetic targeting to tumor vasculature through MRI and biodistribution

The development of noninvasive imaging techniques for the assessment of cancer treatment is rapidly becoming highly important. The aim of the present study is to show that magnetic cationic liposomes (MCLs), incorporating superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs), are a versatile theranostic nanoplatform for enhanced drug delivery and monitoring of cancer treatment. We have shown that tumor signal intensities in T2-weighted MR images decreased by an average of 20 ± 5% and T2* relaxation times decreased by 14 ± 7 ms 24 h after intravenous administration of our MCL formulation. This compares to an average decrease in tumor signal intensity of 57 ± 12% and a T2* relaxation time decrease of 27 ± 8 ms after the same time period with the aid of magnetic guidance. MR and biodistribution analysis clearly show the efἀcacy of MCLs as MRI contrast agents, prove the use of magnetic guidance, and demonstrate the potential of MCLs as agents for imaging, guidance and therapeutic delivery.

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