Picomolar sensitivity MRI and photoacoustic imaging of cobalt nanoparticles

Louis S. Bouchard, M. Sabieh Anwar, Gang L. Liu, Byron Hann, Z. Harry Xie, Joe W. Gray, Xueding Wang, Alexander Pines, Fanqing Frank Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

163 Scopus citations


Multimodality imaging based on complementary detection principles has broad clinical applications and promises to improve the accuracy of medical diagnosis. This means that a tracer particle advantageously incorporates multiple functionalities into a single delivery vehicle. In the present work, we explore a unique combination of MRI and photoacoustic tomography (PAT) to detect picomolar concentrations of nanoparticles. The nanoconstruct consists of ferromagnetic (Co) particles coated with gold (Au) for biocompatibility and a unique shape that enables optical absorption over a broad range of frequencies. The end result is a dual-modality probe useful for the detection of trace amounts of nanoparticles in biological tissues, in which MRI provides volume detection, whereas PAT performs edge detection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4085-4089
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number11
StatePublished - Mar 17 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Dual-modality imaging
  • Ferromagnetic nanoparticle molecular imaging
  • MRI contrast
  • Photoacoustic tomography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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