Intraperitoneal Injection Improves the Uptake of Nanoparticle-Labeled High-Density Lipoprotein to Atherosclerotic Plaques Compared With Intravenous InjectionCLINICAL PERSPECTIVE
A Multimodal Imaging Study in ApoE Knockout Mice
Background—The aim of this study was to assess whether high-density lipoprotein (HDL) labeled with superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIOs) and quantum dots was able to detect atherosclerotic lesions in mice after intravenous and intraperitoneal injection by multimodal imaging.
Methods and Results—Nanoparticle-labeled HDLs (NP-HDLs) were characterized in vitro by dynamic light scattering and size exclusion chromatography with subsequent cholesterol and fluorescence measurements. For biodistribution and blood clearance studies, NP-HDLSPIOs radiolabeled with 59Fe (NP-HDL59Fe-SPIOs) were injected intravenously or intraperitoneally into ApoE knockout mice (n=6), and radioactivity was measured using a gamma counter. NP-HDL accumulation within atherosclerotic plaques in vivo and ex vivo was estimated by MRI at 7 Tesla, ex vivo confocal fluorescence microscopy, x-ray fluorescence microscopy, and histological analysis (n=3). Statistical analyses were performed using a 2-tailed Student t-test. In vitro characterization of NP-HDL confirmed properties similar to endogenous HDL. Blood concentration time curves showed a biexponential decrease for the intravenous injection, whereas a slow increase followed by a steady state was noted for intraperitoneal injection. Radioactivity measurements showed predominant accumulation in the liver and spleen after both application approaches. NP-HDL59Fe-SPIOs uptake into atherosclerotic plaques increased significantly after intraperitoneal compared with intravenous injection (P<0.01). In vivo MRI showed an increased uptake of NP-HDL into atherosclerotic lesions after intraperitoneal injection, which was confirmed by ex vivo MRI, x-ray fluorescence microscopy, confocal fluorescence microscopy, and histological analysis.
Conclusions—In vivo MRI and ex vivo multimodal imaging of atherosclerotic plaque using NP-HDL is feasible, and intraperitoneal application improves the uptake within vessel wall lesions compared with intravenous injection.
- Received April 25, 2013.
- Accepted November 27, 2013.
- © 2013 American Heart Association, Inc.