Gadolinium chelate safety in pregnancy: Barely detectable gadolinium levels in the juvenile nonhuman primate after in utero exposure

Joao Prola-Netto, Mark Woods, Victoria H.J. Roberts, Elinor L. Sullivan, Christina Ann Miller, Antonio E. Frias, Karen Y. Oh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Purpose: To determine whether gadolinium remains in juvenile nonhuman primate tissue after maternal exposure to intravenous gadoteridol during pregnancy. Materials and Methods: Gravid rhesus macaques and their offspring (n = 10) were maintained, as approved by the institutional animal care and utilization committee. They were prospectively studied as part of a pre-existing ongoing research protocol to evaluate the effects of maternal malnutrition on placental and fetal development. On gestational days 85 and 135, they underwent placental magnetic resonance imaging after intravenous gadoteridol administration. Amniocentesis was performed on day 135 prior to administration of the second dose of gadoteridol. After delivery, the offspring were followed for 7 months. Tissue samples from eight different organs and from blood were harvested from each juvenile macaque. Gadolinium levels were measured by using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Results: Gadolinium concentration in the amniotic fluid was 0.028 X 10-5 %ID/g (percentage injected dose per gram of tissue) 50 days after administration of one gadoteridol dose. Gadolinium was most consistently detected in the femur (mean, 2.5 X 10-5 %ID/g; range, [0.81-4.1] X 10-5 %ID/g) and liver (mean, 0.15 X 10-5 %ID/g; range, [0-0.26] X 10-5 %ID/g). Levels were undetectable in the remaining sampled tissues, with the exception of one juvenile skin sample (0.07 X 10-5 %ID/g), one juvenile spleen sample (0.039 X 10-5 %ID/g), and one juvenile brain (0.095 X 10-5 %ID/g) and kidney (0.13 X 10-5 %ID/g) sample. Conclusion: The presence of gadoteridol in the amniotic fluid after maternal injection enables confirmation that it crosses the placenta. Extremely low levels of gadolinium are found in juvenile macaque tissues after in utero exposure to two doses of gadoteridol, indicating that a very small amount of gadolinium persists after delivery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)122-128
Number of pages7
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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