Nicholas Whiting1, Jingzhe Hu1, 2, Maja Cassidy3, Marc Ramirez1, James A. Bankson1, Niki Millward1, David Menter1, Marsha Frazier1, Charles Marcus, 34, Pratip Bhattacharya5
1The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, United States; 2Bioengineering Department, Rice University, Houston, TX, United States; 3Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, United States; 4University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark; 5University of Texas, Houston, TX, United States
We describe 29Si magnetic resonance spectroscopy and imaging of hyperpolarized silicon nanoparticles ranging from 20 nm to 2um. The enhanced detection sensitivity, long hyperpolarization decay times (T1 ~40 minutes), and amenable surface chemistry as well as biocompatibility and biodegrability of these nanoparticles make them potentially well-suited as cancer targeting agents. We discuss optimizations to the nanoparticle size, porosity, and surface functionalization with regard to polarization dynamics. Future studies will investigate the viability of functionalized silicon nanoparticles as in vivo targeting agents for the early detection of colorectal polyps and tumors on murine models.