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Issue 25, 2016
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Stable J-aggregation enabled dual photoacoustic and fluorescence nanoparticles for intraoperative cancer imaging

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Abstract

J-aggregates display nanoscale optical properties which enable their use in fluorescence and photoacoustic imaging applications. However, control over their optical properties in an in vivo setting is hampered by the conformational lability of the J-aggregate structure in complex biological environments. J-aggregating nanoparticles (JNP) formed by self-assembly of bacteriopheophorbide-lipid (Bchl-lipid) in lipid nanovesicles represents a novel strategy to stabilize J-aggregates for in vivo bioimaging applications. We find that 15 mol% Bchl-lipid embedded within a saturated phospholipid bilayer vesicle was optimal in terms of maximizing Bchl-lipid dye loading, while maintaining a spherical nanoparticle morphology and retaining spectral properties characteristic of J-aggregates. The addition of cholesterol maintains the stability of the J-aggregate absorption band for up to 6 hours in the presence of 90% FBS. In a proof-of-concept experiment, we successfully applied JNPs as a fluorescence contrast agent for real-time intraoperative detection of metastatic lymph nodes in a rabbit head-and-neck cancer model. Lymph node metastasis delineation was further verified by visualizing the JNP within the excised lymph node using photoacoustic imaging. Using JNPs, we demonstrate the possibility of using J-aggregates as fluorescence and photoacoustic contrast agents and may potentially spur the development of other nanomaterials that can stably induce J-aggregation for in vivo cancer bioimaging applications.

Graphical abstract: Stable J-aggregation enabled dual photoacoustic and fluorescence nanoparticles for intraoperative cancer imaging

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
18 Nov 2015
Accepted
24 Dec 2015
First published
24 Dec 2015

Nanoscale, 2016,8, 12618-12625
Article type
Paper
Author version available

Stable J-aggregation enabled dual photoacoustic and fluorescence nanoparticles for intraoperative cancer imaging

M. Shakiba, K. K. Ng, E. Huynh, H. Chan, D. M. Charron, J. Chen, N. Muhanna, F. S. Foster, B. C. Wilson and G. Zheng, Nanoscale, 2016, 8, 12618
DOI: 10.1039/C5NR08165C

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