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Details for Patent: 6,706,253

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Details for Patent: 6,706,253

Title: Osmotically stabilized microbubble preparations
Abstract:A microbubble preparation formed of a plurality of microbubbles comprising a first gas and a second gas surrounded by a membrane such as a surfactant, wherein the first gas and the second gas are present in a molar ratio of from about 1:100 to about 1000:1, and wherein the first gas has a vapor pressure of at least about (760-x) mm Hg at 37.degree. C., where x is the vapor pressure of the second gas at 37.degree. C., and wherein the vapor pressure of each of the first and second gases is greater than about 75 mm Hg at 37.degree. C.; also disclosed are methods for preparing microbubble compositions, including compositions that rapidly shrink from a first average diameter to a second average diameter less than about 75% of the first average diameter and are stabilized at the second average diameter; kits for preparing microbubbles; and methods for using such microbubbles as ultrasound contrast agents.
Inventor(s): Schutt; Ernest G. (San Diego, CA), Evitts; David P. (La Jolla, CA), Kinner; Rene Alta (San Diego, CA), Anderson; Charles David (Lebanon, NJ), Weers; Jeffry G. (San Diego, CA)
Assignee:
Filing Date:May 21, 2001
Application Number:09/863,982
Claims:1. A gas filled microbubble preparation stabilized by gas osmotic pressure, comprising: a mixture of a first gas or gases and a second gas or gases wherein the second gas or gases act as a gas osmotic agent, wherein said first gas and said second gas are respectively present in a molar ratio of about 1:100 to about 1000:1, and wherein said first gas has a vapor pressure of at least about (760-x) mm Hg at 37.degree. C., where x is the vapor pressure of the second gas at 37.degree. C., and wherein said vapor pressure of each of said first and second gases is greater than about 75 mm Hg at 37.degree. C., with the proviso that said first gas and said second gas are not water vapor.

2. The preparation of claim 1, wherein said second gas comprises a fluorocarbon and said first gas is a nonfluorocarbon.

3. The preparation of claim 2, wherein said first gas comprises nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, or a mixture thereof.

4. The preparation of claim 2, wherein: said microbubbles are in a liquid medium and have a first average diameter; the ratio of said first gas to said second gas in said microbubbles is at least 1:1; and said microbubbles are adapted to shrink in said medium as a result of loss of said first gas through said membrane to a second average diameter of less than about 75% of said first diameter and then remain stabilized at or about said second diameter for at least about 1 minute as a result of a gas osmotic pressure differential across said membrane.

5. The preparation of claim 4, wherein said medium is aqueous.

6. The preparation of claim 4, wherein said medium is in a container and said microbubbles have been formed in said container.

7. The preparation of claim 4, wherein said medium is blood in vivo.

8. The preparation of claim 4, wherein said liquid medium contains gas or gases dissolved therein with a gas tension of at least about 700 mm Hg, wherein said first diameter is at least about 5 .mu.m, and wherein the tension of the gas or gases dissolved in said medium is less than the pressure of the same gas or gases inside said microbubbles.

9. The preparation of claim 4, wherein said first diameter is at least about 10 .mu.m and said second diameter is between about 1 .mu.m and 6 .mu.m.

10. The preparation of claim 1, wherein said second gas has an average molecular weight at least about 4 times that of said first gas.

11. The preparation of claim 1, wherein said second gas has a vapor pressure less than about 750 mm Hg at 37.degree. C.

12. The preparation of claim 11, wherein said molar ratio of said first gas to said second gas is from about 1:10 to about 500:1.

13. The preparation of claim 11, wherein said second gas comprises a fluorocarbon and said first gas is a nonfluorocarbon.

14. The preparation of claim 13, wherein said second gas comprises at least two fluorocarbons.

15. The preparation of claim 13, wherein said second gas comprises a perfluorocarbon.

16. The preparation of claim 11, wherein both said first gas and said second gas comprise fluorocarbons.

17. The preparation of claim 1, wherein said microbubbles contain as said first gas, or as said second gas, or respectively as said first and second gases, gaseous perfluorobutane and perfluorohexane in a ratio from about 1:10 to about 10:1.

18. The preparation of claim 1, wherein said microbubbles contain as said first gas, or as said second gas, or respectively as said first and second gases, gaseous perfluorobutane and perfluoropentane in a ratio from about 1:10 to about 10:1.

19. The preparation of claim 1, wherein said second gas has a water solubility of not more than about 0.5 mM at 25.degree. C. and one atmosphere, and wherein said first gas has a water solubility at least about 10 times greater than that of said second gas.

20. The preparation of claim 1, wherein the permeability of the membrane to said first gas is at least about 5 times greater than the permeability of said membrane to said second gas.
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