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Mol Imaging Biol. 2010 Jan-Feb;12(1):25-34. doi: 10.1007/s11307-009-0237-9. Epub 2009 Jul 7.

Modification of aminosilanized superparamagnetic nanoparticles: feasibility of multimodal detection using 3T MRI, small animal PET, and fluorescence imaging.

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Klinik für Strahlenheilkunde, CC6, Charité Campus Virchow-Klinikum, Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Augustenburger Platz 1, 13353, Berlin, Germany.



The aim of our study was to modify an aminosilane-coated superparamagnetic nanoparticle for cell labeling and subsequent multimodal imaging using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET), and fluorescent imaging in vivo.


We covalently bound the transfection agent HIV-1 tat, the fluorescent dye fluorescein isothiocyanate, and the positron-emitting radionuclide gallium-68 to the particle and injected them intravenously into Wistar rats, followed by animal PET and MRI at 3.0 T. As a proof of principle hepatogenic HuH7 cells were labeled with the particles and observed for cell toxicity as well as detectability by MRI and biodistribution in vivo.


PET imaging and MRI revealed increasing hepatic and splenic accumulation of the particles over 24 h. Adjacent in vitro studies in hepatogenic HuH7 cells showed a rapid intracellular accumulation of the particles with high labeling efficiency and without any signs of toxicity. In vivo dissemination of the labeled cells could be followed by dynamic biodistribution studies.


We conclude that our modified superparamagnetic nanoparticles are stable under in vitro and in vivo conditions and are therefore applicable for efficient cell labeling and subsequent multimodal molecular imaging. Moreover, their multiple free amino groups suggest the possibility for further modifications and might provide interesting opportunities for various research fields.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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