Multi-modal imaging probe for assessing the efficiency of stem cell delivery to orthotopic breast tumours†
Stem cells have been utilised as anti-cancer agents due to their ability to home to and integrate within tumours. Methods to augment stem cell homing to tumours are being investigated with the goal of enhancing treatment efficacy. However, it is currently not possible to evaluate both cell localisation and cell viability after engraftment, hindering optimisation of therapy. In this study, luciferase-expressing human adipocyte-derived stem cells (ADSCs) were incubated with Indium-111 radiolabelled iron oxide nanoparticles to produce cells with tri-modal imaging capabilities. ADSCs were administered intravenously (IV) or intracardially (IC) to mice bearing orthotopic breast tumours. Cell fate was monitored using bioluminescence imaging (BLI) as a measure of cell viability, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for cell localisation and single photon emission computer tomography (SPECT) for cell quantification. Serial monitoring with multi-modal imaging showed the presence of viable ADSCs within tumours as early as 1-hour post IC injection and the percentage of ADSCs within tumours to be 2-fold higher after IC than IV. Finally, histological analysis was used to validate engraftment of ADSC within tumour tissue. These findings demonstrate that multi-modal imaging can be used to evaluate the efficiency of stem cell delivery to tumours and that IC cell administration is more effective for tumour targeting.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Recent Open Access Articles