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Details for Patent: 5,679,323

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Details for Patent: 5,679,323

Title: Hepatocyte-specific receptor-mediated endocytosis-type compositions
Abstract:A new class of magnetic resonance (MR) contrast agents are described whose in vivo biodistribution is based upon the ability of certain cells to recognize and internalize macromolecules, including the MR contrast agents of the present invention, via a process which substantially involves receptor mediated endocytosis. The RME-type MR contrast agents described herein comprised of biodegradable superparamagnetic metal oxides associated with a variety of macromolecular species, including but not limited to, serum proteins, hormones, asialoglycoproteins, galactose-terminal species, polysaccharides, arabinogalactan, or conjugates of these molecules with other polymeric substances such as a poly(organosilane) and dextran. One of the advantages of these MR contrast agents is that they may be selectively directed to those cells which bear receptors for a particular macromolecule or ligand and are capable of undergoing receptor mediated endocytosis. An MR contrast agent prepared from biodegradable superparamagnetic iron oxide and asialofetuin, or more preferably arabinogalactan, for example, is selectively localized in the hepatocytes the liver with no significant accumulation in the spleen. An MR experiment which can be carried out shortly after administration to the subject of the contrast agents of the invention can thus provide a method for obtaining an enhanced MR image, as well as valuable information regarding the functional or metabolic state of the organ or tissue under examination. Preparative methods, biodistribution data, and time function MR images are further provided.
Inventor(s): Menz; Edward T. (Quincy, MA), Josephson; Lee (Arlington, MA)
Assignee: Advanced Magnetics, Inc. (Cambridge, MA)
Filing Date:May 18, 1995
Application Number:08/444,136
Claims:1. A composition of matter which comprises of arabinogalactan modified to incorporate a diagnostic label, which arabinogalactan is capable of being recognized and internalized by hepatocytes of the liver by receptor-mediated endocytosis, thereby making said composition capable of being internalized by such hepatocytes.

2. The composition of claim 1 in which said label comprises a radioisotope.

3. The composition of claim 1 in which said label comprises a metallic species selected from the group consisting of gallium-67 and technetium-99m.

4. The composition of claim 1 in which said label comprises iodine-123.

5. The composition of claim 1 in which said label comprises a biodegradable colloidal superparamagnetic metal oxide particle, which metal oxide particle is capable of being biodegraded in a subject, as evidenced by a return of proton relaxation rates to preadministration levels, within 30 days of administration and comprises one or more individual biodegradable superparamagnetic metal oxide crystals.

6. The composition of claim 5 in which said colloid has an overall mean diameter of about 3000 angstroms or less, as measured by light scattering.

7. The composition of claim 5 in which said colloid has an overall mean diameter of about 1000 angstroms or less, as measured by light scattering.

8. The composition of claim 1 in which said composition is an MRI contrast agent.

9. The composition of claim 1 in which said diagnostic label is a paramagnetic metal ion.

10. The composition of claim 9 in which said paramagnetic metal ion is selected from the group consisting of iron and gadolinium.

11. A method for obtaining an enhanced MR image of an organ or tissue of an animal or human subject which comprises:

(a) administering to such a subject an effective amount of a colloidal biodegradable superparamagnetic contrast agent in a physiologically acceptable medium such that an image-enhancing amount of such contrast agent can be internalized by hepatocytes of the liver by receptor mediated endocytosis, said contrast agent comprising (1) biodegradable superparamagnetic metal oxide particles, physically or chemically joined with (2) a ligand,

wherein such metal oxide particles:

comprise one or more individual biodegradable superparamagnetic metal oxide crystals, and

are capable of being biodegraded in such subject, as evidenced by a return of proton relaxation rates of the liver to preadministration levels, within 30 days of administration; and

wherein such ligand:

is capable of being recognized and internalized by hepatocytes of the liver by receptor mediated endocytosis, thereby permitting said metal oxide particles to be internalized by such hepatocytes, and

is selected from the group consisting of (i) arabinogalactan, and (ii) a macromolecular species conjugate, which macromolecular species conjugate comprises two macromolecular species, a first macromolecular species which is arabinogalactan, and a second macromolecular species which is physically or chemically joined with the metal oxide particles and conjugated to the first macromolecular species; and (b) recording such MR image.

12. The method according to claim 11 in which said contrast agent is employed in combination with a receptor-blocking agent.

13. The method according to claim 11 in which said metal oxide particles have an overall mean diameter of about 2000 angstroms or less, as measured by light scattering.

14. The method according to claim 11 in which said metal oxide particles have an overall mean diameter of about 1000 angstroms or less, as measured by light scattering.

15. The method according to claim 11 in which said ligand is arabinogalactan.

16. The method according to claim 11 in which the second macromolecular species of the macromolecular species conjugate is a carbohydrate.

17. The method according to claim 16 in which said carbohydrate is dextran.

18. The method according to claim 11 in which the second macromolecular species of the macromolecular species conjugate is an organosilane.

19. The method according to claim 18 in which said organosilane is selected from the group consisting of 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane, p-aminophenyltrimethoxysilane, N-2-aminoethyl-3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane, n-dodecyltriethoxysilane, and n-hexyltrimethoxysilane.

20. The method according to claim 11 in which the metal of said metal oxide particles is iron.

21. A colloidal biodegradable superparamagnetic contrast agent, said contrast agent comprising (1) biodegradable superparamagnetic metal oxide particles, physically or chemically joined with (2) a ligand,

wherein such metal oxide particles:

comprise one or more individual biodegradable superparamagnetic metal oxide crystals, and

are capable of being biodegraded in such subject, as evidenced by a return of proton relaxation rates of the liver to preadministration levels, within 30 days of administration; and

wherein such ligand:

is capable of being recognized and internalized by hepatocytes of the liver by receptor mediated endocytosis, thereby making said metal oxide particles capable of being internalized by such hepatocytes, and

is selected from the group consisting of (i) arabinogalactan, and (ii) a macromolecular species conjugate, which macromolecular species conjugate comprises two macromolecular species, a first macromolecular species which is arabinogalactan, and a second macromolecular species which is physically or chemically joined with the metal oxide particles and conjugated to the first macromolecular species.

22. The composition of claim 21 in which the metal of said metal oxide particles is iron.

23. The composition of claim 22 in the molar ratio of galactose moieties of arabinogalactan to iron is not less than about 0.0001 and not greater than about 1.0.

24. The composition of claim 21 which is further characterized as having a distribution coefficient, D, favoring the hepatocytes of the liver over a reference organ or tissue of at least about 3.

25. The composition of claim 21 which is further characterized as having a distribution coefficient, D, favoring the hepatocytes of the liver over a reference organ or tissue of at least about 20.

26. The composition of claim 21 in which said particles have an overall mean diameter of about 2000 angstroms or less, as measured by light scattering.

27. The composition of claim 21 in which said particles have an overall mean diameter of about 1000 angstroms or less, as measured by light scattering.

28. The composition according to claim 21 in which said ligand is arabinogalactan.

29. The composition according to claim 21 in which the second macromolecular species of the macromolecular species conjugate is a carbohydrate.

30. The composition according to claim 29 in which said carbohydrate is dextran.

31. The composition according to claim 21 in which the second macromolecular species of the macromolecular species conjugate is an organosilane.

32. The composition according to claim 31 in which said organosilane is selected from the group consisting of 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane, p-aminophenyltrimethoxysilane N-2-aminoethyl-3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane, n-dodecyltriethoxysilane, and n-hexyltrimethoxysilane.
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