Gold Nanoprisms as Optoacoustic Signal Nanoamplifiers for In Vivo Bioimaging of Gastrointestinal Cancers

Authors

  • Chenchen Bao,

    1. Department of Bio-Nano Science and Engineering, National Key Laboratory of Micro/Nano, Fabrication Technology, Institute of Micro & Nano Science and Technology, Shanghai JiaoTong University, Shanghai, 200240, China
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  • Nicolas Beziere,

    1. Institute for Biological and Medical Imaging, Technische Universität München and Helmholtz Zentrum München, Neuherberg, 85764, Germany
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  • Pablo del Pino,

    1. Instituto de Nanociencia de Aragon (INA), Universidad de Zaragoza, Zaragoza, 50018, Spain
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  • Beatriz Pelaz,

    1. Instituto de Nanociencia de Aragon (INA), Universidad de Zaragoza, Zaragoza, 50018, Spain
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  • Giovani Estrada,

    1. Institute of Bioinformatics, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Neuherberg, 85764, Germany
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  • Furong Tian,

    1. Comprehensive Pneumology Centre, Institute of Lung Biology and Disease, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Neuherberg, 85764, Germany
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  • Vasilis Ntziachristos,

    1. Institute for Biological and Medical Imaging, Technische Universität München and Helmholtz Zentrum München, Neuherberg, 85764, Germany
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  • Jesus M. de la Fuente,

    Corresponding author
    1. Instituto de Nanociencia de Aragon (INA), Universidad de Zaragoza, Zaragoza, 50018, Spain
    • Instituto de Nanociencia de Aragon (INA), Universidad de Zaragoza, Zaragoza, 50018, Spain.
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  • Daxiang Cui

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Bio-Nano Science and Engineering, National Key Laboratory of Micro/Nano, Fabrication Technology, Institute of Micro & Nano Science and Technology, Shanghai JiaoTong University, Shanghai, 200240, China
    • Department of Bio-Nano Science and Engineering, National Key Laboratory of Micro/Nano, Fabrication Technology, Institute of Micro & Nano Science and Technology, Shanghai JiaoTong University, Shanghai, 200240, China
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Abstract

Early detection of cancer greatly increases the chances of a simpler and more effective treatment. Traditional imaging techniques are often limited by shallow penetration, low sensitivity, low specificity, poor spatial resolution or the use of ionizing radiation. Hybrid modalities, like optoacoustic imaging, an emerging molecular imaging modality, contribute to improving most of these limitations. However, this imaging method is hindered by relatively low signal contrast. Here, gold nanoprisms (AuNPrs) are used as signal amplifiers in multispectral optoacoustic tomography (MSOT) to visualize gastrointestinal cancer. PEGylated AuNPrs are successfully internalized by HT-29 gastrointestinal cancer cells in vitro. Moreover, the particles show good biocompatibility and exhibit a surface plasmon band centered at 830 nm, a suitable wavelength for optoacoustic imaging purposes. These findings extend well to an in vivo setting, in which mice are injected with PEGylated AuNPrs in order to visualize tumor angiogenesis in gastrointestinal cancer cells. Overall, both our in vitro and in vivo results show that PEGylated AuNPrs have the capacity to penetrate tumors and provide a high-resolution signal amplifier for optoacoustic imaging. The combination of PEGylated AuNPrs and MSOT represents a significant advance for the in vivo imaging of cancers.

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