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Nanoscale research letters

Polyethylene glycol-modified dendrimer-entrapped gold nanoparticles enhance CT imaging of blood pool in atherosclerotic mice.


PMID 25288918

Abstract

We report a new use of dendrimer-entrapped gold nanoparticles (Au DENPs) modified by polyethylene glycol (PEG) with good biocompatibility for in vitro and in vivo imaging of atherosclerotic mice by computed tomography (CT). In this study, Au DENPs were synthesized using poly(amidoamine) (PAMAM) dendrimers of generation 5 (G5.NH2) modified by PEG monomethyl ether (G5.NH2-mPEG20) as templates. In vitro cytotoxicity and flow cytometry assays show that the formed PEGylated Au DENPs have good biocompatibility and are non-cytotoxic at the Au concentration up to 300xa0μM. Silver staining and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) further confirm that the Au DENPs are able to be uptaken by macrophages and are located dominantly in the lysosomes of the cells. Importantly, the formed PEGylated Au DENPs are able to be used for CT imaging of murine macrophages in vitro and macrophages in atherosclerotic mice in vivo using apolipoprotein-E-gene-deficient mice as a model. These findings suggest that the formed PEGylated Au DENPs are a promising contrast agent for CT imaging of atherosclerosis.

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