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Abstract #1923

Iron Retention in Nonproliferative Cancer Cells Allows for Tracking by MRI: An In Vivo Assay for Studying Cancer Cell Dormancy

Donna H Murrell 1,2 , Fiona Dickson 1 , Amanda M Hamilton 1 , and Paula J Foster 1,2

1 Imaging, Robarts Research Institute, London, Ontario, Canada, 2 Medical Biophysics, Western University, London, Ontario, Canada

Monitoring the fate of dormant cancer cells is important because these provide a reservoir of viable cells that contribute to relapse, even after treatment appears successful. Here, we demonstrate that iron-based MRI cell tracking can be used to study nonproliferative cancer cells in metastatic and primary cancer models. We present 3D MRI of the mouse brain illustrating persisting signal voids over time and show these represent nonproliferative cancer cells. This work shows varying dormancy profiles in cancer, and the ability for nonproliferative cells to persist through therapy. Understanding this dormant cell population is vital to prevent tumor recurrence in patients.

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