Stephen Patrick1, Tiago B. Rodrigues, 12, Scott K. Lyons2, Mikko I. Kettunen, 12, Kevin M. Brindle, 12
1Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom; 2Cancer Research UK, Cambridge, United Kingdom
A new MRI reporter gene system is described based on TIM2, which is a receptor protein for the heavy-subunit of ferritin and which mediates its endocytosis. Ferritin, which produces negative contrast in T2 weighted images, can also be emptied of iron and filled with manganese, making it an effective T1 contrast agent as well. We demonstrate here that expression of TIM2 results in detectable changes in image contrast In Vitro and in vivo following addition of ferritin.