MRI-based Visualization of Iron-labeled CD133+ Human Endothelial Progenitor Cells
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The objective of this study is to build up a kind of effective approach to multiply CD133+ endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) and visualize cells by labeling with two FDA-approved agents based on MRI technique. CD133+ cells were separated by immunomagnetic microbeads selection and grew with serum-free medium. Seven days later, CD133+ cell production was collected and co-incubated with iron complex for 24 h for labeling. The iron-labeled cells were suspended into agarose gel and scanned by MRI for visualization. Labeled cells were also analyzed for cell viability. Iron can be effectively introduced into CD133+ EPCs plasma in culture and visualized by changing the MRI signal intensity. Iron had no influence on cell viability. Conclusion: Iron substance can be applied to label CD133+ cells without cytotoxicity and iron-labeled cells can be visualized by MRI image. Due to the non-invasive property and repeatability of MRI technology and this kind of method could be used for tracing in vivo stem cells in the future.