Behavior of Supramolecular Assemblies of Radiometal-Filled and Fluorescent Carbon Nanocapsules In Vitro and In Vivo

Haobo Ge, Patrick J. Riss, Vincenzo Mirabello, David G. Calatayud, Stephen E. Flower, Rory L. Arrowsmith, Tim D. Fryer, Young Hong, Steve Sawiak, Robert M.J. Jacobs, Stanley W. Botchway, Rex M. Tyrrell, Tony D. James, John S. Fossey, Jonathan R. Dilworth, Franklin I. Aigbirhio*, Sofia I. Pascu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Hybrid materials based on supramolecularly assembled single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) are generated for positron emission tomography (PET), magnetic resonance imaging, and fluorescence imaging. The all-in-one imaging probe allows quantitative imaging from subcellular resolution to whole tissue regions. The SWNTs can be exposed to aqueous solutions of non-radioactive and radioactive metal salts in the presence of fullerenes and β-D-glucan. Encapsulating 64Cu ions achieves a minimum of 69% incorporation of radiochemical. The results suggest that this method can be extended to other metal ions of medical relevance, such as zirconium(IV)-89 or rhenium(VII)-188, which are used for medical imaging or radiotherapy, respectively. The in vivo uptake of 64Cu(II)@SWNT@β-D-glucan in Wistar rats allows the investigation of organ biodistribution by microPET. Radioactivity rapidly accumulates predominantly in the lungs and myocardium with peak uptakes of 4.8 ± 0.9 standardized uptake value. Furthermore, such materials are fully traceable in cells by multiphoton fluorescence lifetime imaging with near-infrared excitation (910 nm).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)437-460
Number of pages24
Issue number3
Early online date31 Aug 2017
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2017


  • carbon nanotubes
  • copper-64
  • directed and self-assembly
  • fluorescence microscopy
  • nano-radiochemistry
  • nanohybrid materials
  • positron emission tomography
  • supramolecular chemistry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, medical
  • Materials Chemistry


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