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Open AccessArticle

Magneto-Liposomes as MRI Contrast Agents: A Systematic Study of Different Liposomal Formulations

1
Department for Nanostructured Materials, Jožef Stefan Institute, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
2
School of Pharmacy, Queen’s University Belfast, Belfast BT9 7BL, UK
3
Condensed Matter Physics Department, Jožef Stefan Institute, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
4
Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Cell Biology, University of Ljubljana, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
5
Department of Industrial Chemistry “Toso Montanari”, University of Bologna, 40136 Bologna, Italy
6
Department for Environmental Sciences, Jožef Stefan Institute, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(5), 889; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050889
Received: 2 April 2020 / Revised: 27 April 2020 / Accepted: 30 April 2020 / Published: 6 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials for Contrast Agent and Biomedical Imaging)
The majority of the clinically approved iron oxide nanoparticles (IO NPs) used as contrast agents for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) have been withdrawn from the market either due to safety concerns or lack of profits. To address this challenge, liposomes have been used to prepare IO-based T2 contrast agents. We studied the influence of different phospholipids on the relaxivity (r2) values of magneto-liposomes (MLs) containing magnetic NPs in the bilayer, where a strong correlation between the bilayer fluidity and r2 is clearly shown. Embedding 5-nm IO NPs in the lipid bilayer leads to a significant improvement in their relaxivity, where r2 values range from 153 ± 5 s−1 mM−1 for DPPC/cholesterol/DSPE-PEG (96/50/4) up to 673 ± 12 s−1 mM−1 for DOPC/DSPE-PEG (96/4), compared to “free” IO NPs with an r2 value of 16 s−1 mM−1, measured at 9.4 T MRI scanner. In vitro MRI measurements, together with the ICP-MS analysis, revealed MLs as highly selective contrast agents that were preferentially taken up by cancerous T24 cells, which led to an improvement in the contrast and an easier distinction between the healthy and the cancerous cells. A careful selection of the lipid bilayer to prepare MLs could offer efficient MRI contrast agents, even at very low IO NP concentrations. View Full-Text
Keywords: liposomes; magnetic resonance imaging; iron oxide; contrast agent liposomes; magnetic resonance imaging; iron oxide; contrast agent
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kostevšek, N.; Cheung, C.C.L.; Serša, I.; Kreft, M.E.; Monaco, I.; Comes Franchini, M.; Vidmar, J.; Al-Jamal, W.T. Magneto-Liposomes as MRI Contrast Agents: A Systematic Study of Different Liposomal Formulations. Nanomaterials 2020, 10, 889. https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050889

AMA Style

Kostevšek N, Cheung CCL, Serša I, Kreft ME, Monaco I, Comes Franchini M, Vidmar J, Al-Jamal WT. Magneto-Liposomes as MRI Contrast Agents: A Systematic Study of Different Liposomal Formulations. Nanomaterials. 2020; 10(5):889. https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050889

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kostevšek, Nina; Cheung, Calvin C.L.; Serša, Igor; Kreft, Mateja E.; Monaco, Ilaria; Comes Franchini, Mauro; Vidmar, Janja; Al-Jamal, Wafa T. 2020. "Magneto-Liposomes as MRI Contrast Agents: A Systematic Study of Different Liposomal Formulations" Nanomaterials 10, no. 5: 889. https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10050889

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