OBJECTIVE: To localize magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agents injected intravenously into mouse livers.
STUDY DESIGN: Parallel studies were performed on fluorescent europium and nonfluorescent, paramagnetic gadolinium and on a product combining nanoparticles of Fe and Texas Red to obtain combined information on the distribution of these molecules inside the liver. The distribution of different superparamagnetic iron oxides was also studied because the size of these new compounds is not always convenientfor microcirculation studies.
RESULTS: Europium and Texas Red can be detected by confocal microscopy. Europium, iron and gadolinium can be detected by secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) microscopy. Studies confirmed the complementarity of both microscopies. They also confirmed the possibility of using europium as a model of gadolinium to analyze thefate of MRI contrast agents.
CONCLUSION: The methodology can be used on mice injected intravenously and analyzed by confocal and SIMS microscopy to localize MRI contrast agents inside cellular and tissue specimens of mice.