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J Vasc Interv Radiol. 2005 Oct;16(10):1365-71.

Combined radiofrequency ablation and adjuvant liposomal chemotherapy: effect of chemotherapeutic agent, nanoparticle size, and circulation time.

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Laboratory for Minimally Invasive Tumor Therapy, Department of Radiology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02215, USA.



To evaluate the effects of liposomal chemotherapeutic agent, nanoparticle size, and liposome circulation time on tissue coagulation and intratumoral drug uptake when radiofrequency (RF) ablation is combined with adjuvant intravenous liposomal chemotherapy in an animal breast tumor model.


Ninety-one R3230 mammary adenocarcinoma nodules were implanted in 48 Fischer rats. First, standardized RF ablation was combined with intravenous liposomal doxorubicin, cisplatin, or 5-fluorouracil (35 tumors each). Second, three different-sized doxorubicin-containing nanoparticle preparations were combined with standardized RF ablation. Last, two doxorubicin-containing liposome preparations with different blood elimination half-lives were combined with RF ablation. Coagulation diameter and interstitial doxorubicin concentration were measured 48 hours after treatment and compared with use of statistical analysis.


All combinations of RF with liposomal chemotherapy caused significantly greater tumor necrosis than RF alone (P<.05). Significantly increased necrosis was observed with intravenous liposomal RF/doxorubicin and RF/cisplatin compared with intravenous liposomal RF/5-fluorouracil (P<.01). Greater coagulation was observed with RF combined with 100-nm nanoparticles compared with 20-nm or 250-nm nanoparticles (P=.01 and P=.04, respectively). Additionally, greater intratumoral doxorubicin uptake was observed in the group treated with 20-nm nanoparticles compared with those treated with other sizes of nanoparticles (P<.05). RF plus liposomal doxorubicin produced greater coagulation and intratumoral doxorubicin uptake than RF plus 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphatidic acid (P<.05).


When combined with RF ablation, modification of adjuvant intravenous liposomal chemotherapy, including nanoparticle size, circulation time, and chemotherapeutic agent, can influence intratumoral drug accumulation and tissue coagulation.

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