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Nano Lett. 2007 Dec;7(12):3798-802. Epub 2007 Nov 20.

Photoacoustic tomography of a rat cerebral cortex in vivo with au nanocages as an optical contrast agent.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Engineering, Washington University in St Louis, St Louis, MO 63130, USA.


Poly(ethylene glycol)-coated Au nanocages have been evaluated as a potential near-infrared (NIR) contrast agent for photoacoustic tomography (PAT). Previously, Au nanoshells were found to be an effective NIR contrast agent for PAT; however, Au nanocages with their more compact sizes (<50 nm compared to >100 nm for Au nanoshells) and larger optical absorption cross sections should be better suited for in vivo applications. We sequentially injected Au nanocages into the circulatory system of a rat in three administrations and in vivo PAT was conducted immediately prior to the first injection and continued until 5 h after the final injection. A gradual enhancement of the optical absorption in the cerebral cortex, by up to 81%, was observed over the course of the experiment.

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