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Near-infrared fluorescent probes in cancer imaging and therapy: an emerging field

Authors Yi XM, Wang FL, Qin WJ, Yang XJ, Yuan JL

Received 7 January 2014

Accepted for publication 23 January 2014

Published 5 March 2014 Volume 2014:9(1) Pages 1347—1365

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S60206

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 7

Xiaomin Yi, Fuli Wang, Weijun Qin, Xiaojian Yang, Jianlin Yuan

Department of Urology, Xijing Hospital, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, People's Republic of China

Abstract: Near-infrared fluorescence (NIRF) imaging is an attractive modality for early cancer detection with high sensitivity and multi-detection capability. Due to convenient modification by conjugating with moieties of interests, NIRF probes are ideal candidates for cancer targeted imaging. Additionally, the combinatory application of NIRF imaging and other imaging modalities that can delineate anatomical structures extends fluorometric determination of biomedical information. Moreover, nanoparticles loaded with NIRF dyes and anticancer agents contribute to the synergistic management of cancer, which integrates the advantage of imaging and therapeutic functions to achieve the ultimate goal of simultaneous diagnosis and treatment. Appropriate probe design with targeting moieties can retain the original properties of NIRF and pharmacokinetics. In recent years, great efforts have been made to develop new NIRF probes with better photostability and strong fluorescence emission, leading to the discovery of numerous novel NIRF probes with fine photophysical properties. Some of these probes exhibit tumoricidal activities upon light radiation, which holds great promise in photothermal therapy, photodynamic therapy, and photoimmunotherapy. This review aims to provide a timely and concise update on emerging NIRF dyes and multifunctional agents. Their potential uses as agents for cancer specific imaging, lymph node mapping, and therapeutics are included. Recent advances of NIRF dyes in clinical use are also summarized.

Keywords: near infrared dyes, nanoparticles, imaging, cancer targeting, cancer therapy

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