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Acta Biochim Biophys Sin (Shanghai). 2011 Apr;43(4):301-6. doi: 10.1093/abbs/gmr010. Epub 2011 Feb 23.

Specific targeting of nasopharyngeal carcinoma cell line CNE1 by C225-conjugated ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide particles with magnetic resonance imaging.

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Cancer Center, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China.


An accurate definition of clinical target volume (CTV) is essential for the application of radiotherapy in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) treatment. A novel epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeting contrast agent (C225-USPIO) was designed by conjugating ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide (USPIO) nanoparticles with cetuximab (C225), to non-invasively define the CTV of tumor. The immunobinding activity of C225-USPIO to NPC cell line CNE1 was confirmed by flow cytometry and immunofluorescence. The time-dependent accumulation of C225-USPIO in CNE1 cells was evaluated using Prussian blue staining. Targeted internalization and subcellular localization of C225-USPIO was confirmed by transmission electron microscope. The results indicated that C225-USPIO specifically bound to EGFR on the surface of CNE1 cells and was taken up into the cell. The uptake of C225-USPIO by CNE1 cells increased significantly with time, when compared with human IgG-USPIO. In addition, 4.7 T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed that C225-USPIO had a capacity to accumulate in the CNE1 cells, with a resultant marked decrease in MRI T2-weighted signal intensity over time. These findings imply that C225-USPIO has the potential as an MRI contrast agent and can be employed to non-invasively detect early-stage NPC with EGFR overexpression. This provides sufficient theoretical basis for commencing in vivo experiments with the compound.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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