Nuclear Imaging of Liposomal Drug Delivery Systems: A Critical Review of Radiolabelling Methods and Applications in Nanomedicine

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Abstract

The integration of nuclear imaging with nanomedicine is a powerful tool for efficient development and clinical translation of liposomal drug delivery systems. Furthermore, it may allow highly efficient imaging-guided personalised treatments. In this article, we critically review methods available for radiolabelling liposomes. We discuss the influence that the radiolabelling methods can have on their biodistribution and highlight the often-overlooked possibility of misinterpretation of results due to decomposition in vivo. We stress the need for knowing the biodistribution/pharmacokinetics of both the radiolabelled liposomal components and free radionuclides in order to confidently evaluate the images, as they often share excretion pathways with intact liposomes (e.g. phospholipids, metallic radionuclides) and even show significant tumour uptake by themselves (e.g. some radionuclides). Finally, we describe preclinical and clinical studies using radiolabelled liposomes and discuss their impact in supporting liposomal drug development and clinical translation in several diseases, including personalised nanomedicine approaches.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)134-160
Number of pages27
JournalADVANCED DRUG DELIVERY REVIEWS
Volume143
Early online date3 Jun 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Keywords

  • Drug delivery
  • Liposome
  • Nanomedicine
  • Nuclear imaging
  • PET
  • SPECT
  • Theranostics

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