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WIREs Nanomed Nanobiotechnol
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Hyperpolarized MRI with silicon micro and nanoparticles: Principles and applications

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Abstract Silicon‐based micro and nanoparticles are ideally suited for use as biomedical imaging agents because of their biocompatibility, biodegradability, and simple surface chemistry that facilitates drug loading and targeting. A method to hyperpolarize silicon particles using dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP), which increases magnetic resonance (MR) imaging signals by several orders‐of‐magnitude through enhanced nuclear spin alignment, was developed to allow silicon particles to function as contrast agents for in vivo magnetic resonance imaging. In this review, we describe the application of the DNP technique to silicon particles and nanoparticles for background‐free real‐time molecular MR imaging. This review provides a summary of the state‐of‐the‐science in silicon particle hyperpolarization with a detailed protocol for hyperpolarizing silicon particles. This information will foster awareness and spur interest in this emerging area of nanoimaging and provide a path to new developments and discoveries to further advance the field. This article is categorized under: Diagnostic Tools > In Vivo Nanodiagnostics and Imaging Therapeutic Approaches and Drug Discovery > Nanomedicine for Oncologic Disease Therapeutic Approaches and Drug Discovery > Emerging Technologies
Adopted from Whiting et al. (2016)—in vivo 29Si MRI of ESTA‐1 functionalized 2 μm SiMPs (100 mg; dissolved in 400 ml PBS) directly injected into the tumor volume of an orthotopic ovarian cancer mouse (HeyA8). Tumor periphery outlined in green. Single image taken 20 min postinjection, showing the SiMPs retain their enhanced signal while in the tumor volume
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A photograph of the 29Si DNP setup highlighting the individual components
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Adopted from Tang et al (M. Tang et al., 2018)—(a) schematic diagram of the process of inducing neovascularization in mouse cornea and treatment with functionalized SiNPs. (b) Representative images of corneal neovascularization induced by sodium hydroxide burn injury (scale 5 mm). (c) Fluorescence images of angiogenic blood vessels in the corneas taken after 4 h of circulation of intravenously injected unfunctionalized SiNPs (upper) or SiNPs‐RGDyC (lower) (scale 25 μm)
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Schematics of the workflow showing the steps of preclinical targeted molecular imaging using hyperpolarized functionalized silicon particles. (a) Bare silicon particles, reactive poly(ethylene glycol) and antibody of choice, (b) silicon particle functionalized with antibody via PEG linker, (c) functionalized silicon particles subjected to DNP process, (d) appropriate murine model prepared for hyperpolarized (HP) silicon particle administration, (e) murine model prepared for the injection of HP silicon particles placed in MRI scanner, (f) hyperpolarized 29Si image is captured in vivo demonstrating targeting which can then be overlaid with 1H anatomical image
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Therapeutic Approaches and Drug Discovery > Emerging Technologies
Therapeutic Approaches and Drug Discovery > Nanomedicine for Oncologic Disease
Diagnostic Tools > In Vivo Nanodiagnostics and Imaging

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