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February 26th, 2007
Stem cell therapy, primarily bone marrow transplantation, plays a key role in treating leukemia and other types of cancer. To better track the fate of stem cells injected into patients, researchers at the Siteman Center of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence (CCNE) have turned to a combination of fluorine-based magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and nanoparticles made of liquid perfluorocarbons.
Reporting its work in The FASEB Journal, a team of investigators led by Samuel Wickline, M.D., principal investigator of the Siteman CCNE, and long-time collaborator Gregory Lanza, M.D., both at Washington University in St. Louis, described its use of two distinct perfluorocarbon nanoparticles to track different stem cells injected into tumor-bearing mice. These particular nanoparticles are taken up readily by stem cells over the course of a 12-hour incubation, and the stem cells showed no ill effects from the nanoparticles.
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