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Keywords:

  • imaging agents;
  • lanthanides;
  • PARACEST;
  • proton exchange;
  • saturation transfer
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Perfect timing: A “smart” pro-PARACEST agent has been designed to detect β-galactosidase activity. Upon enzymatic attack, the self-immolative benzyloxycarbamate linker bearing the enzyme-specific substrate is cleaved and yields [Yb(dota-NH2)], which is endowed with a PARACEST effect. This pro-PARACEST agent is the first representative of a family of molecular imaging probes for the specific detection of a large variety of enzymatic activities using PARACEST.