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Abstract #0636

Bright-Ferritin: A novel MRI gene reporter complex for sensitive and longitudinal cell tracking

Daniel Andrzej Szulc1,2, Xavier Alexander Lee2,3, Hai-Ying Mary Cheng4,5, and Hai-Ling Margaret Cheng1,2,6
1Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada, 2Translational Biology & Engineering Program, Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research, Toronto, ON, Canada, 3Department of Physiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada, 4Biology, University of Toronto Mississauga, Toronto, ON, Canada, 5Department of Cell & Systems Biology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada, 6Edward S. Rogers Sr. Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada

Tissue engineering with transplanted cells has the potential to repair and regenerate almost every tissue and organ of the body. One major obstacle of cell therapies is the inability to longitudinally assess injected cells. Non-invasive imaging with contrast-enhanced MRI is highly suited for this task but is limited with current methods. In this study, we report a novel method for producing bright endogenous cellular contrast through a genetic MRI reporter that results in the formation of in situ ferritin-manganese nanoparticles. The signal produced by these cells is significantly higher than traditional iron labelled ferritin-overexpressing cells and manganese-permeable cell lines.

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