Results of a multidisciplinary study, focused on capturing radioactive-excited nanoparticles and radiation luminescence to enable disease detection through subtle signs, were presented by investigators during the 57th Annual Meeting of SNM. This discovery could result in the development of new, next-generation imaging techniques.
The two papers relating to this study were selected as the Molecular Imaging Center of Excellence Young Investigator Award’s winners. These awards were presented during the annual meeting of SNM in Salt Lake City.
Existing imaging technology and nuclear medicine agents image the particle activities at the atomic, cellular, and molecular levels. In addition, radioactive materials are also able to radiate barely visible light. This light can be sensed using the sensitive optical imaging technology.
Researchers taking part in the study had focused on the low-energy light window in the electromagnetic spectrum’s near infrared and visible band. This window is invisible to the human eye. However, it can be sensed by using highly precise optical cameras that are able to pick up light energy through the radioactive source’s charged particles
Commonly used molecular imaging agents were tested by the researchers for sensing a series of biological practices in the body. Imaging agents that were utilized in the study are 90Y labeled peptide for targeting tumors particularly, fluorine-based 18F-FDG and Na18F, yttrium-based 90Y-Cl3, and sodium iodide-based Na131I.
Findings of the study has shown that nano-imaging and radioactive molecular probes techniques that utilize radiation luminescence and broadly studied fluorescent nanoparticles had the capability to be used on non-invasive functional imaging applications with optical imaging systems. Such nanoparticles are also called quantum dots.
This study, besides having a considerable affect on the disease’s early detection and diagnosis, could also be used for the image-guided therapy’s future applications. The Stanford University’s radiology assistant professor and the study’s co-author, Zhen Cheng, Ph.D, explained that the research has been able to bridge optical imaging and nuclear imaging.