Zhang CJ, Valic MS, Chen J, Zheng G

STEM Fellowship Journal, 2017

DOI: 10.17975/sfj-2017-007

Porphysome nanoparticles are composed of porphyrin-conjugated lipids. The attachment of the porphyrin moiety to each phospholipid confers novel properties to the liposome-like nanoparticle, allowing it to perform a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic applications. The metal chelating properties of porphyrin can be used to bind manganese (Mn), transforming the porphysome into a contrast agent for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Previous work has extensively characterized the properties of the Mn-porphysome. Herein, we build upon that work by demonstrating the bio-interactions of Mn-porphysomes in vitro to validate their study in vivo. Particle stability in serum was inferred from fluorescence quenching efficiency, and tolerability to cells was measured using an MTT assay. Mn-porphysomes remained >80% quenched after 14H and showed no toxicity to cells at concentrations below 125 mM. These preliminary results suggest that the porphysome may be used to enhance MRI contrast in vivo.