Design, synthesis and characterization of neurotransmitter responsive probes for magnetic resonance and optical imaging

Abstract : In spite of the key role of neurotransmitters (NTs) in signal transduction, their non-invasive in vivo monitoring remains an important challenge. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has recently been demonstrated as a promising technique to non-invasively visualize physiological events with excellent temporal and spatial resolution. In particular, smart MRI contrast agents that are able to report on the physico-chemical status of the tissues, start to have a strong impact in neuroscience. The objective of this work was the design, synthesis and in vitro characterization of a series of lanthanide-based probes responsive to NTs with the aim to track in vivo concentration changes of NTs using MR or optical imaging. The design of our imaging probes relies on a dual binding approach of zwitterionic NTs to the Ln3+ complexes, involving interactions (i) between a positively charged Ln3+ chelate and the carboxylate function of the NTs and (ii) between an azacrown ether appended on the chelate and the amine group of the neurotransmitters. Some of the novel contrast agents were found to exhibit high relaxivities and a remarkable relaxivity response towards NTs, though little selectivity against bicarbonate. In order to apply a bimodal MRI/optical imaging approach, we have also incorporated a benzophenone moiety into the chelate to sensitize the near-infrared emitting Ln3+ ions. The Yb3+ analogue proved to be highly sensitive to NTs.
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Fatima Oukhatar. Design, synthesis and characterization of neurotransmitter responsive probes for magnetic resonance and optical imaging. Material chemistry. Université d'Orléans, 2012. English. ⟨NNT : 2012ORLE2076⟩. ⟨tel-01170074⟩

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