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Preparation and evaluation of poly(2-hydroxyethyl aspartamide)-hexadecylamine-iron oxide for MR imaging of lymph nodes

Dae Chul Ha1, Ha Young Lee2, Yeo Won Son3, Soon Hong Yuk4, Youn Woong Choi5, Byung Kook Kwak6, Byung Cheol Shin2, Cheong-Weon Cho1* and Sun Hang Cho2*

Author Affiliations

1 College of Pharmacy, Chungnam National University, 99, Daehak-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-764, Republic of Korea

2 Division of Drug Discovery Research, Research Center for Medicinal Chemistry, Korean Research Institute of Chemical Technology (KRICT), 100 Jang-dong, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-600, Republic of Korea

3 University of Science and Technology, 113 Gwahangno, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-333, Republic of Korea

4 College of Pharmacy, Korea University, 2511 Sejongro, Sejong 339-700, Republic of Korea

5 Korea United Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 25-23 Nojanggongdan-gil, Jeondong-myeon, Sejong 339-841, Republic of Korea

6 Chung-Ang University, 102 Heukseok-ro, Dongjak-gu, Seoul 156-755, Republic of Korea

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2014, 9:38  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-9-38

Published: 18 January 2014


The purpose of this study was to synthesize biocompatible poly(2-hydroxyethyl aspartamide)–C16-iron oxide (PHEA-C16-iron oxide) nanoparticles and to evaluate their efficacy as a contrast agent for magnetic resonance imaging of lymph nodes. The PHEA-C16-iron oxide nanoparticles were synthesized by coprecipitation method. The core size of the PHEA-C16-iron oxide nanoparticles was about 5 to 7 nm, and the overall size of the nanoparticles was around 20, 60, and 150 nm in aqueous solution. The size of the nanoparticles was controlled by the amount of C16. The 3.0-T MRI signal intensity of a rabbit lymph node was effectively reduced after intravenous administration of PHEA-C16-iron oxide with the size of 20 nm. The in vitro and in vivo toxicity tests revealed the high biocompatibility of PHEA-C16-iron oxide nanoparticles. Therefore, PHEA-C16-iron oxide nanoparticles with 20-nm size can be potentially useful as T2-weighted MR imaging contrast agents for the detection of lymph nodes.

Magnetic resonance imaging; Lymph node; Ultrasuperparamagnetic iron oxide; Nanoparticles