Successful development of ultra-sensitive molecular imaging nanoprobes for the detection of targeted biological objects is a challenging task. Although magnetic nanoprobes have the potential to perform such a role, the results from probes that are currently available have been far from optimal. Here we used artificial engineering approaches to develop innovative magnetic nanoprobes, through a process that involved the systematic evaluation of the magnetic spin, size and type of spinel metal ferrites. These magnetism-engineered iron oxide (MEIO) nanoprobes, when conjugated with antibodies, showed enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) sensitivity for the detection of cancer markers compared with probes currently available. Also, we successfully visualized small tumors implanted in a mouse. Such high-performance, nanotechnology-based molecular probes could enhance the ability to visualize other biological events critical to diagnostics and therapeutics.
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We would like to thank J.-S. Shin and K.-S. Kim for discussions, Y.-J. Kim for MR imaging, E.-S. Lee (Yonsei) and H.-J. Ko (Yonsei) for cell culture, J.-M. Oh (Chuncheon-Korea Basic Science Institute) for transmission electron microscopy (TEM), J.-g. Kim for high-voltage electron microscopic analyses, H.C. Kim for superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) analyses, K.G. Cho for CLIO synthesis and J.D. Lee for the biodistribution study. This work was supported in part by the National Research Laboratory (M10600000255), National Cancer Institute Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence, National Core Research Center (R15-2004-024-02002-0), the National R&D Program for Cancer Control of the Ministry of Health & Welfare (0320250-2), and the Korea Research Foundation (2004-003-E00171) and Second Stage of Brain Korea 21 of Chemistry and Medicine.
The authors declare no competing financial interests.
Colloidal stability, structural characterization and size-dependent magnetism of MnMEIO nanoparticles. (PDF 586 kb)
Determination of HER2/neu expression levels of various cell lines by qRT-PCR analyses. (PDF 63 kb)
Determination of target-specificity of MnMEIO-Herceptin and CLIO-Herceptin conjugates. (PDF 99 kb)
Examination of passive targeting effects on MR signal. (PDF 418 kb)
Comparison of various nanoparticle-Herceptin conjugates in their in vivo MR cancer detection capability. (PDF 227 kb)
Column chromatography results of MnMEIO-Herceptin conjugates. (PDF 87 kb)
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Lee, JH., Huh, YM., Jun, Yw. et al. Artificially engineered magnetic nanoparticles for ultra-sensitive molecular imaging. Nat Med 13, 95–99 (2007). https://doi.org/10.1038/nm1467
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