Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Chin Med J (Engl). 2013 Jun;126(12):2242-7.

Specific targeting of angiogenesis in lung cancer with RGD-conjugated ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide particles using a 4.7T magnetic resonance scanner.

Author information

Cancer Center, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei 430030, China.



Angiogenesis is an essential step for tumor development and metastasis. The cell adhesion molecule avβ3 integrin plays an important role in angiogenesis and is a specific marker of tumor angiogenesis. A novel avβ3 integrin- targeted magnetic resonance (MR) imaging contrast agent utilizing Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD) and ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide particles (USPIO) (referred to as RGD-USPIO) was designed and its uptake by endothelial cells was assessed both in vitro and in vivo to evaluate the angiogenic profile of lung cancer.


USPIO were coated with -NH3+ and conjugated with RGD peptides. Prussian blue staining was performed to evaluate the specific uptake of RGD-USPIO by human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Targeted uptake and subcellular localization of RGD-USPIO in HUVECs were confirmed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The ability of RGD-USPIO to noninvasively assess avβ3 integrin positive vessels in lung adenocarcinoma A549 tumor xenografts was evaluated with a 4.7T MR scanner. Immunohistochemistry was used to detect avβ3 integrin expression and vessel distribution in A549 tumor xenografts.


HUVECs internalized RGD-USPIO significantly more than plain USPIO. The uptake of RGD-USPIO by HUVECs could be competitively inhibited by addition of free RGD. A significant decrease in T2 signal intensity (SI) was observed at the periphery of A549 tumor xenografts at 30 minutes (P < 0.05) and 2 hours (P < 0.01) after RGD-USPIO was injected via the tail vein. Angiogenic blood vessels were mainly distributed in the periphery of tumor xenografts with positive avβ3 integrin expression.


RGD-USPIO could specifically label avβ3 integrin and be taken up by HUVECs. This molecular MR imaging contrast agent can specifically evaluate the angiogenic profile of lung cancer using a 4.7T MR scanner.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Support Center