A rapid and convenient method for detecting a broad spectrum of malignant cells from malignant pleuroperitoneal effusion of patients using a multifunctional NIR heptamethine dye
Detection of malignant cells from malignant effusion is crucial to establish or adjust therapies of patients with cancer. The conventional qualitative detection in malignant pleuroperitoneal effusion is cytological analysis, which is time-consuming and complicated. Therefore, a faster and more convenient detection strategy is urgently needed. In this study, we report a rapid method to detect malignant cells from malignant pleuroperitoneal effusion (hydrothorax and ascites) of patients using IR-808, a tumor-targeted near-infrared (NIR) fluorescent heptamethine dye (tNRI dye), which exhibited superior labeling efficacy without specific conjugation to biomarkers. The targeted imaging performance toward malignant cells using IR-808 was confirmed by comparing with normal cells, and the fluorescence stability assay of IR-808 in malignant effusion was performed from 1 h to 48 h. In order to save time and dose, the incubation time and concentration were optimized to 10 min and 5 μM, which were used to detect malignant cells from 28 clinical samples of malignant pleuroperitoneal effusion. The results revealed that IR-808 could be internalized selectively by malignant cells of samples, and these malignant cells could be easily distinguished from normal cells under a fluorescence microscope. The positive rates between cytological analysis and the IR-808 staining method were 86% (24/28) and 79% (22/28), respectively. An excellent concordance level (Kappa = 0.752, P < 0.001) was observed between the two methods. Our results indicated that IR-808, a new NIR fluorescent heptamethine dye with unique optical imaging and tumor targeting properties, could provide a fast and simple way to detect a broad spectrum of malignant cells from malignant pleuroperitoneal effusion in patients.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Celebrating 100 years of Chemistry at Nanjing University