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Details for Patent: 5,705,187

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Details for Patent: 5,705,187

Title: Compositions of lipids and stabilizing materials
Abstract:Compositions comprising, in an aqueous carrier, a lipid and a material which is capable of stabilizing the composition. The stabilizing material is associated non-covalently with said lipid and is present in an amount sufficient to coat the lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the composition. The compositions are particularly suitable for use in diagnostic applications, including ultrasound. The compositions can take the form of vesicular compositions, such as micelles and liposomes.
Inventor(s): Unger; Evan C. (Tucson, AZ)
Assignee: ImaRx Pharmaceutical Corp. (Tucson, AZ)
Filing Date:Apr 05, 1995
Application Number:08/417,238
Claims:1. A vesicular composition comprising, in an aqueous carrier, vesicles comprising a lipid, a gas or gaseous precursor encapsulated in the vesicles, and a material which is capable of stabilizing the composition, wherein said stabilizing material is associated non-covalently with said lipid and is present in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the composition, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer.

2. A composition according to claim 1 wherein said lipid comprises a phospholipid.

3. A composition according to claim 2 wherein said phospholipid is selected from the group consisting of phosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylethanolamine and phosphatidic acid.

4. A composition according to claim 3 wherein said phosphatidylcholine is selected from the group consisting of dioleoylphosphatidylcholine, dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine, dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine and distearoylphosphatidylcholine.

5. A composition according to claim 4 wherein said phosphatidylcholine comprises dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine.

6. A composition according to claim 3 wherein said phosphatidylethanolamine is selected from the group consisting of dipalmitoylphosphatidylethanolamine, dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine, N-succinyldioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine and 1-hexadecyl-2-palmitoylglycerophosphoethanolamine.

7. A composition according to claim 6 wherein said phosphatidylethanolamine is dipalmitoylphosphatidylethanolamine.

8. A composition according to claim 3 wherein said phosphatidic acid comprises dipalmitolylphosphatidic acid.

9. A composition according to claim 1 wherein said polymer is selected from the group consisting of polyhydroxy, polyamine, polycarboxy and polysaccharide polymers.

10. A composition according to claim 1 which is selected from the group consisting of micelles and liposomes.

11. A composition according to claim 1 wherein said stabilizing material is present in an amount sufficient to lower the viscosity of the composition.

12. A composition according to claim 1 wherein said non-covalent association is selected from the group consisting of ionic interaction, dipole--dipole interaction and van der Waals forces.

13. A composition according to claim 1 further comprising a bioactive agent.

14. A vesicular composition according to claim 1 further comprising a polymer which is conjugated to at least a portion of said lipid.

15. A vesicular composition according to claim 14 wherein said polymer is selected from the group consisting of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG), poly(vinylpyrrolidone), polyoxomers, polysorbate and polyvinyl alcohol.

16. A vesicular composition according to claim 15 wherein said PEG is selected from the group consisting of PEG 2,000, PEG 5,000 and PEG 8,000.

17. A vesicular composition according to claim 14 wherein said lipid-polymer conjugate is dipalmitoylphosphatidylethanolamine-PEG 5,000.

18. A formulation for therapeutic or diagnostic use comprising, in combination with a bioactive agent, vesicles comprising a lipid, a gas or gaseous precursor encapsulated in said vesicles, and a material which is capable of stabilizing the formulation, wherein said stabilizing material is associated non-covalently with said lipid and is present in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the formulation, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer.

19. A formulation according to claim 18 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of micelles and liposomes.

20. A formulation according to claim 19 wherein said bioactive agent is substantially entrapped within said micelles or liposomes.

21. A process for the preparation of a stabilized vesicular composition comprising vesicles comprising a lipid, a gas or gaseous precursor encapsulated in the vesicles, and a stabilizing material which is capable of associating non-covalently with said lipid, wherein the process comprises combining together said lipid, gas or gaseous precursor, and stabilizing material, wherein said stabilizing material is combined with said lipid in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the composition, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer.

22. A process according to claim 21 wherein said composition is selected from the group consisting of micelles and liposomes.

23. A process for the preparation of a formulation for diagnostic or therapeutic use comprising, in combination with a bioactive agent, a vesicular composition which comprises a lipid, a gas or gaseous precursor encapsulated in said vesicles, and a stabilizing material which is associated non-covalently with the lipid, wherein the process comprises combining together said bioactive agent and vesicular composition, wherein said stabilizing material is present in said composition in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of said composition, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer.

24. A process according to claim 23 wherein said composition is selected from the group consisting of micelles and liposomes.

25. A stabilized vesicular composition comprising a lipid, a gas or gaseous precursor encapsulated in the vesicles, and a stabilizing material which is capable of associating non-covalently with said lipid, wherein the composition is prepared by combining together said lipid, gas or gaseous precursor, and stabilizing material, wherein said stabilizing material is combined with said lipid in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the composition, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer.

26. A stabilized formulation for diagnostic or therapeutic use comprising a bioactive agent and a vesicular composition which comprises a lipid, a gas or gaseous precursor encapsulated in said vesicles, and a material which is capable of stabilizing the formulation and is associated non-covalently with said lipid, wherein said composition is prepared by combining together said lipid, gas or gaseous precursor and stabilizing material, wherein said stabilizing material is present in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the formulation, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer.

27. A method for providing an image of an internal region of a patient comprising (i) administering to the patient a vesicular composition comprising, in an aqueous carrier, vesicles comprising a lipid, a gas or a gaseous precursor encapsulated in said vesicles, and a material which is capable of stabilizing the composition, wherein said stabilizing material is associated non-covalently with said lipid and is present in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the composition, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer; and (ii) scanning the patient using ultrasound to obtain a visible image of the region.

28. A method for diagnosing the presence of diseased tissue in a patient comprising (i) administering to the patient a vesicular composition comprising, in an aqueous carrier, vesicles comprising a lipid, a gas or a gaseous precursor encapsulated in said vesicles, and a material which is capable of stabilizing the composition, wherein said stabilizing material is associated non-covalently with said lipid and is present in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of the composition, wherein said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer; and (ii) scanning the patient using ultrasound to obtain a visible image of any diseased tissue in the patient.

29. A method for the therapeutic delivery in vivo of a bioactive agent comprising administering to a patient a therapeutically effective amount of a formulation which comprises, in combination with a bioactive agent, a vesicular composition comprising a lipid, a gas or gaseous precursor encapsulated in said vesicles, and a material which stabilizes said composition, wherein said stabilizing material is associated noncovalently with said lipid and is present in said composition in an amount sufficient to coat said lipid but insufficient to raise the viscosity of said composition, wherein said said gas and gaseous precursor comprise a fluorinated compound selected from the group consisting of perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride, and wherein said stabilizing material comprises a polymer.

30. A composition according to claim 1 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

31. A composition according to claim 1 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

32. A composition according to claim 1 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

33. A composition according to claim 32 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

34. A composition according to claim 33 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

35. A composition according to claim 34 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

36. A composition according to claim 34 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

37. A composition according to claim 34 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

38. A composition according to claim 33 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

39. A composition according to claim 38 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

40. A composition according to claim 38 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

41. A composition according to claim 38 whereto said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

42. A composition according to claim 32 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

43. A composition according to claim 42 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

44. A composition according to claim 43 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

45. A composition according to claim 43 whereto said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

46. A composition according to claim 43 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

47. A composition according to claim 42 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

48. A composition according to claim 47 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

49. A composition according to claim 47 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

50. A composition according to claim 47 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

51. A formulation according to claim 18 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

52. A formulation according to claim 18 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

53. A formulation according to claim 18 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

54. A formulation according to claim 53 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

55. A formulation according to claim 54 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

56. A formulation according to claim 55 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

57. A formulation according to claim 55 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

58. A formulation according to claim 55 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

59. A formulation according to claim 54 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

60. A formulation according to claim 59 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

61. A formulation according to claim 59 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

62. A formulation according to claim 59 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

63. A formulation according to claim 53 whereto said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

64. A formulation according to claim 63 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

65. A formulation according to claim 64 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

66. A formulation according to claim 64 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

67. A formulation according to claim 64 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

68. A formulation according to claim 63 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

69. A formulation according to claim 68 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

70. A formulation according to claim 68 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

71. A formulation according to claim 68 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

72. A process according to claim 21 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

73. A process according to claim 21 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

74. A process according to claim 21 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

75. A process according to claim 74 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

76. A process according to claim 75 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

77. A process according to claim 76 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

78. A process according to claim 76 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

79. A process according to claim 76 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

80. A process according to claim 75 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

81. A process according to claim 80 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

82. A process according to claim 80 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

83. A process according to claim 80 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

84. A process according to claim 74 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

85. A process according to claim 84 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

86. A process according to claim 85 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

87. A process according to claim 85 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

88. A process according to claim 85 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

89. A process according to claim 84 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

90. A process according to claim 89 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

91. A process according to claim 89 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

92. A process according to claim 89 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

93. A process according to claim 23 whereto said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

94. A process according to claim 23 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

95. A process according to claim 23 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

96. A process according to claim 95 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

97. A process according to claim 95 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

98. A process according to claim 97 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

99. A process according to claim 97 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

100. A process according to claim 97 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

101. A process according to claim 96 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

102. A process according to claim 101 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

103. A process according to claim 101 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

104. A process according to claim 101 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

105. A process according to claim 95 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

106. A process according to claim 105 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

107. A process according to claim 106 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

108. A process according to claim 106 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

109. A process according to claim 106 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

110. A process according to claim 105 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

111. A process according to claim 110 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

112. A process according to claim 110 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

113. A process according to claim 110 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

114. A composition according to claim 25 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

115. A composition according to claim 25 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

116. A composition according to claim 25 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

117. A composition according to claim 116 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

118. A composition according to claim 117 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

119. A composition according to claim 118 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

120. A composition according to claim 118 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

121. A composition according to claim 118 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

122. A composition according to claim 117 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

123. A composition according to claim 122 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

124. A composition according to claim 122 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

125. A composition according to claim 122 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

126. A composition according to claim 116 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

127. A composition according to claim 126 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

128. A composition according to claim 126 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

129. A composition according to claim 126 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

130. A composition according to claim 126 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

131. A composition according to claim 126 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

132. A composition according to claim 131 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

133. A composition according to claim 131 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

134. A composition according to claim 131 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

135. A formulation according to claim 26 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

136. A formulation according to claim 26 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

137. A formulation according to claim 26 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

138. A formulation according to claim 137 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

139. A formulation according to claim 138 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

140. A formulation according to claim 138 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

141. A formulation according to claim 138 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

142. A formulation according to claim 138 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

143. A formulation according to claim 137 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

144. A formulation according to claim 143 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

145. A formulation according to claim 143 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

146. A formulation according to claim 143 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

147. A formulation according to claim 137 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

148. A formulation according to claim 147 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

149. A formulation according to claim 148 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

150. A formulation according to claim 148 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

151. A formulation according to claim 148 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

152. A formulation according to claim 14 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

153. A formulation according to claim 152 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

154. A formulation according to claim 152 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

155. A formulation according to claim 152 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

156. A method according to claim 27 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

157. A method according to claim 27 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

158. A method according to claim 27 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

159. A method according to claim 158 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

160. A method according to claim 159 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

161. A method according to claim 160 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

162. A method according to claim 160 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

163. A method according to claim 160 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

164. A method according to claim 159 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

165. A method according to claim 164 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

166. A method according to claim 164 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

167. A method according to claim 164 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

168. A method according to claim 158 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

169. A method according to claim 168 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

170. A method according to claim 169 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

171. A method according to claim 169 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

172. A method according to claim 169 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

173. A method according to claim 168 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

174. A method according to claim 173 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

175. A method according to claim 173 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

176. A method according to claim 173 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

177. A method according to claim 28 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

178. A method according to claim 28 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

179. A method according to claim 28 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

180. A method according to claim 179 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

181. A method according to claim 180 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

182. A method according to claim 181 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

183. A method according to claim 181 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

184. A method according to claim 181 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

185. A method according to claim 180 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

186. A method according to claim 185 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

187. A method according to claim 185 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

188. A method according to claim 185 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

189. A method according to claim 179 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

190. A method according to claim 189 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

191. A method according to claim 190 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

192. A method according to claim 190 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

193. A method according to claim 190 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

194. A method according to claim 189 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

195. A method according to claim 194 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

196. A method according to claim 194 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

197. A method according to claim 194 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

198. A method according to claim 29 wherein said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

199. A method according to claim 29 wherein said fluorinated compound comprises a perfluorocarbon.

200. A method according to claim 29 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of unilamellar, oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

201. A method according to claim 200 wherein said vesicles comprise unilamellar vesicles.

202. A method according to claim 201 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

203. A method according to claim 202 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

204. A method according to claim 202 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

205. A method according to claim 202 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

206. A method according to claim 201 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

207. A method according to claim 206 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

208. A method according to claim 206 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

209. A method according to claim 206 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

210. A method according to claim 200 wherein said vesicles are selected from the group consisting of oligolamellar and multilamellar vesicles.

211. A method according to claim 210 wherein said vesicles comprise a monolayer.

212. A method according to claim 211 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

213. A method according to claim 211 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

214. A method according to claim 211 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

215. A method according to claim 210 wherein said vesicles comprise a bilayer.

216. A method according to claim 215 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropentane.

217. A method according to claim 215 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is perfluoropropane.

218. A method according to claim 215 wherein said lipid is a phospholipid and said fluorinated compound is sulfur hexafluoride.

219. A composition according to claim 31 wherein said perfluorocarbon is selected from the group consisting of perfluoromethane, perfluoroethane, perfluoropropane, perfluorobutane and perfluorocyclobutane.

220. A formulation according to claim 18 wherein said perfluorocarbon is selected from the group consisting of perfluoromethane, perfluoroethane, perfluoropropane, perfluorobutane and perfluorocyclobutane.
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