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Biopolymers. 2011;96(6):734-43. doi: 10.1002/bip.21612. Epub 2011 Mar 7.

Sol and gel states in peptide hydrogels visualized by Gd(III)-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging.

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1
Department of Pharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT 84112, USA.

Abstract

The hydrogels assembled from a pair of self-repulsive but mutually attractive decapeptides are visualized by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). It is found that in the absence of Gd(III)-chelate, gelation has little effect on MRI signal intensity. In the presence of Gd(III)-chelate, gelation leads to significant changes in water relaxation and MR signal intensity. The sol to gel transition is best visualized by T2-weighted imaging using large echo time with the sol producing a bright spot and the gel producing a dark spot. MRI studies point to high local Gd(III)-chelate concentration. Small-angle X-ray scattering study indicates that this local enrichment of Gd(III)-chelate has two contributing processes: first, the aggregation of peptides into fibers; second, within peptide fibers, Gd(III)-chelate further aggregate into clusters. This work demonstrates that the status of peptide-based hydrogels can be visualized by MRI with the aid of covalently linked Gd(III)-chelates. This result has implications for monitoring peptide scaffolds in vivo.

PMID:
22252424
PMCID:
PMC3616518
DOI:
10.1002/bip.21612
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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