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Home > Press > Raman Nanoparticle-Aided Imaging of Tumors Moves Closer to Human Trials

Abstract:
In 2008, a team of investigators at Stanford University's Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence demonstrated that they could use a technique known as nanoparticle-aided Raman spectroscopy to look at microscopic structures, including nascent tumors, deep inside the body. That team has now conducted extensive preclinical tests and shown that the gold nanoparticles can be safely administered into the colon and used with a Raman endoscope to image the inside of the large intestines.

Raman Nanoparticle-Aided Imaging of Tumors Moves Closer to Human Trials

Bethesda, MD | Posted on June 29th, 2011

Reporting their work in the journal Small, Sanjiv Sam Gambhir and his colleagues describe the experiments they conducted using radioactively labeled gold nanoparticles to track the accumulation of the nanoparticle imaging agents inside mice. Dr. Gambhir is the principal investigator of the Stanford Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence, one of nine such centers included in the National Cancer Institute's Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer.

After labeling the nanoparticles with a radioactive isotope of copper, the investigators used micro-positron emission tomography (micro-PET) to image the nanoparticles' location in the body. When the nanoparticles were injected intravenously, they accumulated in a variety of organs, with almost 10 percent of the dose of nanoparticles ending up in the liver. In contrast, when the nanoparticles were injected rectally into the colon, less than 1/10th of 1 percent of the nanoparticles accumulated outside of the large intestine even as far as two weeks after injection. In the colon, the nanoparticles could be visualized using an endoscope modified to detect Raman signals.

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About The National Cancer Institute (NCI)
To help meet the goal of reducing the burden of cancer, the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health, is engaged in efforts to harness the power of nanotechnology to radically change the way we diagnose, treat and prevent cancer.

The NCI Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer is a comprehensive, systematized initiative encompassing the public and private sectors, designed to accelerate the application of the best capabilities of nanotechnology to cancer.

Currently, scientists are limited in their ability to turn promising molecular discoveries into benefits for cancer patients. Nanotechnology can provide the technical power and tools that will enable those developing new diagnostics, therapeutics, and preventives to keep pace with today’s explosion in knowledge.

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View abstract - "Preclinical Evaluation of Raman Nanoparticle Biodistribution for their Potential Use in Clinical Endoscopy Imaging."

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