Bismuth nanoparticles provide high fidelity images of breast tumors

Jan 20, 2012

By combining a nanoparticle that is readily visible in X-ray computed tomography (CT) scans with a molecule that targets tumor lymph vessels and other tumor tissues, a research team from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) and the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute has developed a new imaging agent that provides high-fidelity CT images of tumors and their edges. This work, led by Michael Sailor of UCSD and Erkki Ruoslahti of the Burnham Institute, was published in the journal Angewandte Chemie International Edition.

The researchers chose to create a nanoparticle from bismuth, the same element that forms the active ingredient in Pepto-Bismol. Bismuth, with its relatively large and massive nucleus, interacts strongly with X-rays, making it an ideal agent to increase contrast in CT images. To target their bismuth nanoparticles to tumors, the investigators used a small cyclic peptide known as LyP-1. This peptide, discovered in Dr. Ruoslahti's laboratory, homes specifically to the that drain many tumors, as well as to tumor tissues themselves.

Safety tests showed that the bismuth-LyP-1 nanoparticle was well-tolerated when injected into mice and that the nanoparticles cleared from blood and accumulated in tumors within 24 hours. of tumor-bearing mice clearly revealed the presence of tumors and provided a very sharply-detailed image of the tumor margins for a full week after injection. Eventually, the nanoparticles clear from the body through the intestines.

This work, which is detailed in a paper titled, "X-ray computed tomography imaging of by using targeted peptide-labeled bismuth sulfide ," was supported in part by the NCI Alliance for Nanotechnology in Cancer, a comprehensive initiative designed to accelerate the application of nanotechnology to the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer. An abstract of this paper is available at the journal's website.

Explore further: Physicists create new nanoparticle for cancer therapy

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Nanoparticles Cooperate to Detect and Treat Tumors

Mar 26, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- If one nanoparticle is good, two may be better, especially when they are designed to cooperate with each other to diagnose and treat cancer. That finding comes from work led by Michael Sailor, Ph.D., a member ...

A better imaging agent for heart disease and breast cancer

Apr 27, 2011

Scientists are reporting development of a process for producing large quantities of a much-needed new imaging agent for computed tomography (CT) scans in heart disease, breast cancer and other diseases, and the first evidence ...

Dual-Mode Nanoparticles Image Tumors Using MRI and PET

Aug 15, 2008

Medical imaging represents one of the most used and useful procedures in the oncologist’s diagnostic toolkit, even though each of the most useful techniques—magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computerized tomography x-ray ...

Therapeutic nanoparticles targeted to radiation treated tumors

Mar 28, 2011

Radiation and chemotherapy are common partners in anticancer therapy for solid tumors, but too often, the combined side effects associated with each mode of therapy can limit how aggressively oncologists can treat their patients. ...

Recommended for you

Physicists create new nanoparticle for cancer therapy

5 hours ago

A University of Texas at Arlington physicist working to create a luminescent nanoparticle to use in security-related radiation detection may have instead happened upon an advance in photodynamic cancer therapy.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Physicists create new nanoparticle for cancer therapy

A University of Texas at Arlington physicist working to create a luminescent nanoparticle to use in security-related radiation detection may have instead happened upon an advance in photodynamic cancer therapy.

How kids' brain structures grow as memory develops

Our ability to store memories improves during childhood, associated with structural changes in the hippocampus and its connections with prefrontal and parietal cortices. New research from UC Davis is exploring ...