Small molecule fluorophore and copolymer RGD peptide conjugates for ex vivo two-photon fluorescence tumor vasculature imaging

Alma R. Morales, Ciceron O. Yanez, Yuanwei Zhang, Xuhua Wang, Sanchita Biswas, Takeo Urakami, Masanobu Komatsu, Kevin D. Belfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We report the use of small molecule and block copolymer RGD peptide conjugates for deep ex vivo imaging of tumor vasculature in " whole" excised tumors using two-photon fluorescence microscopy (2PFM). The fluorescent probes were administered to mice via tail-vein injection, after which the tumors were excised, fixed, and imaged without further sample preparation. Both RGD conjugates demonstrated specific targeting to tumor blood vessels, and this selectivity imparted excellent contrast in 2PFM micrographs that captured high-resolution 3-D images of the tumor vasculature up to depths of 830 μm in Lewis Lung Carcinoma (LLC) tumors. 2PFM ex vivo fluorescence micrographs clearly revealed tumor vessels, while differences in the sensitivity of tumor vessel imaging were apparent between the small molecule and block copolymer conjugates. Both the small molecule and polymer-based two-photon absorbing probe conjugate are valuable for deep tissue tumor microvasculature imaging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8477-8485
Number of pages9
JournalBiomaterials
Volume33
Issue number33
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Copolymer probe
  • Fluorescent dyes
  • RGD peptide conjugates
  • Tumor vasculature
  • Two-photon absorption
  • Two-photon fluorescence microscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Biophysics
  • Biomaterials
  • Mechanics of Materials

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