Preprint Review Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

A Perspective on Cell Tracking with Magnetic Particle Imaging

Version 1 : Received: 28 September 2020 / Approved: 29 September 2020 / Online: 29 September 2020 (16:35:19 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Journal reference: Tomography 2020
DOI: 10.18383/j.tom.2020.00043


Magnetic Particle Imaging (MPI) is a new imaging modality that sensitively and specifically detects superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs). Many labs have been developing cellular magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) tools using both SPIONs and fluorine-19 (19F)-based contrast agents for numerous important applications, including tracking of immune and stem cells used for cellular therapies. SPION-based MRI cell tracking has very high sensitivity, but low specificity. SPIONs produce negative contrast in MRI, or signal voids. SPIO is not directly detected by MRI, but indirectly through its relaxation effects on protons, therefore, it is not possible to reliably quantify the local tissue concentration of SPION particles and cell number cannot be determined. 19F based cell tracking uses perfluorocarbons (PFC) to label cells. The number of 19F atoms can be directly measured from 19F MR images and related to cell number. 19F MRI has high specificity, but low sensitivity. MPI cell tracking displays great potential for overcoming the challenges of MRI-based cell tracking allowing for both high cellular sensitivity and high specificity and quantification of SPIO labeled cell number. In this paper we describe nanoparticle and MPI system factors that influence MPI sensitivity and resolution, quantification methods and give our perspective on testing and applying MPI for cell tracking.


magnetic particle imaging, cell tracking

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