Article

Longitudinal MRI Evaluation of Intracranial Development and Vascular Characteristics of Breast Cancer Brain Metastases in a Mouse Model

Department of Radiology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas, United States of America.
PLoS ONE (Impact Factor: 3.53). 04/2013; 8(4):e62238. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062238
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Longitudinal MRI was applied to monitor intracranial initiation and development of brain metastases and assess tumor vascular volume and permeability in a mouse model of breast cancer brain metastases. Using a 9.4T system, high resolution anatomic MRI and dynamic susceptibility contrast (DSC) perfusion MRI were acquired at different time points after an intracardiac injection of brain-tropic breast cancer MDA-MB231BR-EGFP cells. Three weeks post injection, multifocal brain metastases were first observed with hyperintensity on T2-weighted images, but isointensity on T1-weighted post contrast images, indicating that blood-tumor-barrier (BTB) at early stage of brain metastases was impermeable. Follow-up MRI revealed intracranial tumor growth and increased number of metastases that distributed throughout the whole brain. At the last scan on week 5, T1-weighted post contrast images detected BTB disruption in 160 (34%) of a total of 464 brain metastases. Enhancement in some of the metastases was only seen in partial regions of the tumor, suggesting intratumoral heterogeneity of BTB disruption. DSC MRI measurements of relative cerebral blood volume (rCBV) showed that rCBV of brain metastases was significantly lower (mean = 0.89±0.03) than that of contralateral normal brain (mean = 1.00±0.03; p<0.005). Intriguingly, longitudinal measurements revealed that rCBV of individual metastases at early stage was similar to, but became significantly lower than that of contralateral normal brain with tumor growth (p<0.05). The rCBV data were concordant with histological analysis of microvascular density (MVD). Moreover, comprehensive analysis suggested no significant correlation among tumor size, rCBV and BTB permeability. In conclusion, longitudinal MRI provides non-invasive in vivo assessments of spatial and temporal development of brain metastases and their vascular volume and permeability. The characteristic rCBV of brain metastases may have a diagnostic value.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Min Chen, Jan 10, 2014
0 Followers
 · 
61 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The limited entry of anticancer drugs into the central nervous system represents a special therapeutic challenge for patients with brain metastases and is primarily due to the blood brain barrier (BBB). Albumin-bound Evans blue (EB) dye is too large to cross the BBB but can grossly stain tissue blue when the BBB is disrupted. The course of tumor development and the integrity of the BBB were studied in three preclinical breast cancer brain metastasis (BCBM) models. A luciferase-transduced braintropic clone of MDA-231 cell line was used. Nude mice were subjected to stereotactic intracerebral inoculation, mammary fat pad-derived tumor fragment implantation, or carotid artery injections. EB was injected 30 min prior to euthanasia at various timepoints for each of the BCBM model animals. Serial bioluminescent imaging demonstrated exponential tumor growth in all models. Carotid BCBM appeared as diffuse multifocal cell clusters. EB aided the localization of metastases ex vivo. Tumor implants stained blue at 7 days whereas gross staining was not evident until day 14 in the stereotactic model and day 28 for the carotid model. EB assessment of the integrity of the BBB provides useful information relevant to drug testing in preclinical BCBM models.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 02/2014; 144(1). DOI:10.1007/s10549-014-2854-5 · 4.20 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Breast cancer brain metastasis, occurring in 30% of breast cancer patients at stage IV, is associated with high mortality. The median survival is only 6 months. It is critical to have suitable animal models to mimic the hemodynamic spread of the metastatic cells in the clinical scenario. Here, we are introducing the use of small animal ultrasound imaging to guide an accurate injection of brain tropical breast cancer cells into the left ventricle of athymic nude mice. Longitudinal MRI is used to assessing intracranial initiation and growth of brain metastases. Ultrasound-guided intracardiac injection ensures not only an accurate injection and hereby a higher successful rate but also significantly decreased mortality rate, as compared to our previous manual procedure. In vivo high resolution MRI allows the visualization of hyperintense multifocal lesions, as small as 310 µm in diameter on T2-weighted images at 3 weeks post injection. Follow-up MRI reveals intracranial tumor growth and increased number of metastases that distribute throughout the whole brain.
    Journal of Visualized Experiments 03/2014; DOI:10.3791/51146
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Phosphatidylserine (PS), normally restricted to the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane, becomes exposed on the outer surface of viable endothelial cells in tumor vasculature, but not in normal blood vessels. In the present study, we report the use of PGN635, a novel human monoclonal antibody that specifically targets PS, for in vivo molecular MRI of tumor vasculature. The F(ab')2 fragments of PGN635 were conjugated to polyethylene glycol (PEG) coated iron oxide nanoparticles (IO). Targeting specificity of the PS-targeted Nanoprobe, IO-PGN635F(ab')2 was first confirmed by in vitro MRI and histological staining. In vivo longitudinal MRI was then performed before and after i.v. injection of IO-PGN635F(ab')2 into mice bearing 4T1 breast tumors. T2-weighted MR images at 9.4 T revealed inhomogeneous signal loss in tumor as early as 2 h post injection. Furthermore, ionizing radiation induced a significant increase in PS exposure on tumor vascular endothelial cells, resulting in significantly enhanced and sustained tumor contrast (p < 0.05). Spatially heterogeneous MRI contrast correlated well with histological staining of tumor vascular endothelium. Our studies suggest that PS exposed within the lumen of tumor vasculature is a highly specific and useful biomarker for targeted MRI contrast agents.
    Journal of Biomedical Nanotechnology 05/2014; 10(5):846-55. DOI:10.1166/jbn.2014.1851 · 7.58 Impact Factor