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Abstract #2819

EXCI-CEST: exploiting pharmaceutical excipients as safe MRI-CEST contrast agents

Dario Livio Longo 1,2 , Fatima Zzahra Moustaghfir 3 , Lorena Consolino 1,2 , Giuseppe Digilio 4 , and Silvio Aime 1,2

1 University of Turin, Torino, Italy, 2 Molecular Imaging Center, University of Turin, Torino, Italy, 3 University of Vrije Brussels, Brussels, Belgium, 4 Environmental and Life Science, University of Eastern Piedmont "Amedeo Avogadro", Alessandria, Italy

Molecules possessing exchangeable proton pools may be selectively imaged within the MRI-CEST modality. Due to the inherent low sensitivity of this technique, high dosages are required to provide enough contrast, thus limiting possible in vivo application to molecules with high LD50 levels. In this study we explored the CEST properties of several pharmaceutical excipients, due to their high safety profiles. We found that most of them were able to generate sufficient CEST saturation transfer contrast for in vivo applications. Intravenous injection into two different tumor bearing mice (breast and melanoma tumor models) showed that it was possible to monitor their uptake by CEST imaging.

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