Acoustic liposomes (AL) have their inherent echogenicity and can add functionality in serving as drug carriers with tissue specificity. Nonuniform vascular structures and vascular branches/bends are evaluated by imaging the intravascular movement locus of ALs with high-frequency ultrasound (HF-US) imaging. However, the evaluation of antitumor effects on angiogenesis by ALs and HF-US imaging has not been reported. Here, we show that the combination of ALs and an HF-US imaging system is capable of noninvasively evaluating antitumor volumetric and angiogenic effects in preclinical mouse models of various cancers. In this study, the antitumor effects of cisplatin on tumor growth and angiogenesis in mice bearing two different types of tumor cells were assessed. By tracking each AL flowing in the vessel and transferring the images to personal computers, microvessel structures were mapped and reconstructed using the color difference based on SD method. The antitumor effects were confirmed with an in vivo bioluminescence imaging system and immunohistochemical analysis. Our results show that cisplatin inhibits tumor growth by decreasing intratumoral vessel area but does not affect the angiogenesis ratio in the tumor. The vascular occupancy in the outer region of the tumor was larger than that in the inner region; however, both occupancies were similar to those of the control tumor. We propose that this method of mapping microvessels with ALs and an HF-US system can serve as a new molecular imaging method for the assessment of angiogenesis and can be applied to evaluate the antitumor effects by various therapeutic agents.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research