On stability of molecular therapeutic agents for noninvasive photoacoustic and ultrasound image-guided photothermal therapy

Yun Sheng Chen, Pieter Kruizinga, Pratixa P. Joshi, Seungsoo Kim, Kimberly Homan, Konstantin Sokolov, Wolfgang Frey, Stanislav Emelianov

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Image-guided molecular photothermal therapy using targeted gold nanoparticles acting as photoabsorbers can be used to noninvasively treat various medical conditions including cancer. Among different types of gold nanoparticles, gold nanorods are an attractive candidate for both photothermal therapy and photoacoustic imaging due to their high and tunable optical absorption cross-section. However, nanorods are not thermodynamically stable; under laser exposure, the nanorods can easily transform to spheres, thus changing their desired optical properties. In this study, gold-silica coreshell nanorods were prepared by coating silica directly onto the surface of PEGylated gold nanorods using a modified Stöber method. The nanorods were exposed to 800 nm wavelength, 7 ns pulses of light at a 10 Hz pulse repetition rate. For different fluences ranging from 0 to 8 mJ/cm2, the optical extinction spectrum was measured before and after the exposure to investigate their photothermal stability. Finally, the effectiveness of gold-silica core-shell nanoparticles as a photoacoustic contrast agent and photothermal nanoabsorber was tested using inclusion-embedded phantoms and a combined ultrasound and photoacoustic imaging system. The results of our study suggest that gold-silica core-shell nanorods are excellent candidates for image-guided molecular photothermal therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPhotons Plus Ultrasound
Subtitle of host publicationImaging and Sensing 2010
StatePublished - May 3 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventPhotons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2010 - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 24 2010Jan 26 2010

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


ConferencePhotons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2010
CountryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA


  • Cancer therapy
  • Gold-silica core-shell nanorods
  • Photoacoustic imaging
  • Photothermal therapy
  • Ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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