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Vascular Imaging


Figure 1. Athymic male nu/nu mouse (~5-6 wks old), 0.5 hr after injection of IRDye 800CW PEG (1 nmole). Surface blood vessels are visible. Note: ability to visualize vasculature is dependent on mouse model used.

IRDye® 800CW PEG Contrast Agent exploits the unique vascular properties of tumors for molecular imaging of cancer.

  • IRDye 800CW is conjugated to polyethylene glycol (PEG; a soluble synthetic polymer) to create a non-specific contrast agent for vascular imaging.
    • Agent is administered by intravenous (IV) injection
    • Highlights surface vasculature for ~0.5 hour after intravenous injection (Figure 1; requires appropriate mouse model* )
    • Retention of agent is visible in the tumor ~4 hr post-injection (Figure 2)
    • By 9 hours post-injection, the tumor is well defined (Figure 3)
  • Use of IRDye 800CW near-infrared fluorophore minimizes interfering autofluorescence, to improve image quality and resolution.

Images were captured with the Pearl® Imaging System.


Figure 2. A) Athymic male nu/nu mouse, ~4 hr after injection of IRDye 800CW PEG (1 nmole). Large blood vessels and tumor are visible. B) High resolution (85 µm) image of the tumor region shows large blood vessels recruited to feed the tumor. Sequestration of contrast agent in tumor is likely due to enhanced permeability and retention.


Figure 3. Athymic male nu/nu mouse, ~ 9 hr after injection of IRDye 800CW PEG (1 nmole). Tumor is clearly defined.

*Success of vascular imaging depends on the mouse model used. Vessels may be less visible in mice that are obese or have hair.

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