The figure shows a nanoparticle assembly model, with in vivo contrast medium. Initially, gold NanoParticles are injected, stabilized with biotinylated PEG. These enter in the tumour through the vessel flow and passively accumulate in the extracellular matrix for over 24 hours. Then, fluorescent streptavidin is injected, and it links to the biotin on the gold NanoParticles in the interstice. This favourably alters the accumulation kinetics of the contrast medium in the tumour (Perrault S.D. et al., “In vivo assembly of NanoParticles components to improve targeted cancer imaging”, PNAS 2010).
The development of biomedical imaging techniques, such as XRay CT scanning, optical imaging and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), has led to significant progresses in diagnosis and treatment of lot of pathologies. Inorganic NanoParticles are emerging as promising probes for investigating biological processes and both molecular and cellular diseases, speeding up the possibility of detecting in vivo cellular migration and the assessment of the drug response, by means of molecular imaging.
AcZon NanoParticles can be used in this respect, in support to, or instead of, conventional imaging reagents. NanoParticles are “opaque” and, therefore, visible to the conventional in vivo imaging instruments (NMR, PET, …). Furthermore, thanks to their inherent characteristics – lack of cytotoxicity, remarkable capacity to diffuse and controlled variable size – they are able to reach easily cancer tissues and cells.
Depending on the specific requirements of the Customer, AcZon can design and produce NanoParticles usable as contrast media and/or tracers.