Dynamic Multispectral Optoacoustic Tomography (MSOT) Imaging as a Novel Tool for Whole-Body Investigation of Nanoparticle Biodistribution and Tumor Perfusion

W.H.P. Driessen, N.C. Burton, J. Claussen, S. Morscher, T. Sardella, D. Razansky, V. Ntziachristos
iThera Medical, DE

Keywords: optoacoustic imaging, nanoparticle characterization, tumor perfusion


A wide range of nanoparticles differing in size, shape and surface characteristics are available for therapeutic and diagnostic applications in oncology. To ensure optimal accumulation of nanoparticles in solid tumors, it is crucial to obtain quantitative data for their design. We employed a sensitive and specific imaging modality, termed Multispectral Optoacoustic Tomography (MSOT), to dynamically evaluate whole-body distribution and tumor accumulation kinetics of well-characterized nanoparticles. MSOT offers a new and unique imaging modality that (1) has a resolution ten-fold higher than nuclear and optical imaging, (2) allows for real-time imaging with molecular specificity through several centimeters of tissue and (3) is safe (i.e. no ionizing radiation) and cost-efficient. We used this modality to quantitatively determine the influence of surface charge and PEGylation on tumor perfusion kinetics of nanoparticles. These parameters can be utilized for the rational design of nanoparticles for oncology applications.