Optoacoustic imaging of gold nanoparticles targeted to breast cancer cells

Mohammad Eghtedari, Massoud Motamedi, Vsevolod L. Popov, Nicholas A. Kotov, Alexander A. Oraevsky

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Optoacoustic Tomography (OAT) is a rapidly growing technology that enables noninvasive deep imaging of biological tissues based on their light absorption. In OAT, the interaction of a pulsed laser with tissue increases the temperature of the absorbing components in a confined volume of tissue. Rapid perturbation of the temperature (<1°C) deep within tissue produces weak acoustic waves that easily travel to the surface of the tissue with minor attenuation. Abnormal angiogenesis in a malignant tumor, that increases its blood content, makes a native contrast for optoacoustic imaging; however, the application of OAT for early detection of malignant tumors requires the enhancement of optoacoustic signals originated from tumor by using an exogenous contrast agent. Due to their strong absorption, we have used gold nanoparticles (NP) as a contrast agent. 40nm spherical gold nanoparticles were attached to monoclonal antibody to target cell surface of breast cancer cells. The targeted cancer cells were implanted at depth of 5-6cm within a gelatinous object that optically resembles human breast. Experimental sensitivity measurements along with theoretical analysis showed that our optoacoustic imaging system is capable of detecting a phantom breast tumor with the volume of 0.15ml, which is composed of 25 million NP-targeted cancer cells, at a depth of 5 centimeters in vitro.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number06
Pages (from-to)21-28
Number of pages8
JournalProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2004
EventPhotons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing - San Jose, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 25 2004Jan 26 2004


  • Cancer
  • Gold Nanoparticle
  • Herceptin
  • Molecular Contrast
  • Optoacoustic Imaging
  • Sensitivity
  • Targeting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biomaterials
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Optoacoustic imaging of gold nanoparticles targeted to breast cancer cells'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this