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Contrast Media & Molecular Imaging
Volume 2017, Article ID 6387217, 17 pages
Review Article

Brain Tumor Diagnostics and Therapeutics with Superparamagnetic Ferrite Nanoparticles

1Magnetic Resonance Research Center, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA
2Department of Biomedical Engineering, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA
3Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA
4Materials Science Division, Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission, Dhaka, Bangladesh

Correspondence should be addressed to Fahmeed Hyder; ude.elay@redyh.deemhaf

Received 21 July 2017; Accepted 24 September 2017; Published 11 December 2017

Academic Editor: Paulo H. Rosado-de-Castro

Copyright © 2017 Fahmeed Hyder and S. Manjura Hoque. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Ferrite nanoparticles (F-NPs) can transform both cancer diagnostics and therapeutics. Superparamagnetic F-NPs exhibit high magnetic moment and susceptibility such that in presence of a static magnetic field transverse relaxation rate of water protons for MRI contrast is augmented to locate F-NPs (i.e., diagnostics) and exposed to an alternating magnetic field local temperature is increased to induce tissue necrosis (i.e., thermotherapy). F-NPs are modified by chemical synthesis of mixed spinel ferrites as well as their size, shape, and coating. Purposely designed drug-containing nanoparticles (D-NPs) can slowly deliver drugs (i.e., chemotherapy). Convection-enhanced delivery (CED) of D-NPs with MRI guidance improves glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) treatment. MRI monitors the location of chemotherapy when D-NPs and F-NPs are coadministered with CED. However superparamagnetic field gradients produced by F-NPs complicate MRI readouts (spatial distortions) and MRS (extensive line broadening). Since extracellular pH () is a cancer hallmark, imaging is needed to screen cancer treatments. Biosensor imaging of redundant deviation in shifts (BIRDS) extrapolates from paramagnetically shifted signals and the accuracy remains unaffected by F-NPs. Hence effect of both chemotherapy and thermotherapy can be monitored (by BIRDS), whereas location of F-NPs is revealed (by MRI). Smarter tethering of nanoparticles and agents will impact GBM theranostics.