Over the last decade, high-resolution molecular imaging with nanoparticle has provided an unprecedented opportunity to noninvasively assess microanatomical neovascular processes associated with atherosclerosis, cancer, or arthritis as a snap shot or longitudinally with time. The capability to interogate biochemical markers in vivo in 3D over relatively large volumes of tissues facilitates a unique perspective of physiological and disease processes that cannot be easily appreciated with traditional microscopic inspection of 510 µ slices. Moreover, the use of nanoparticles affords a further opportunity to deliver highly potent drugs to great effect with lower total body exposures. For almost a century, Erlichs concept of a magic bullet has eluded medicine, but today the first generation products addressing this vision are in clinical trials. These image-driven technologies offer both clinical and research benefits that were not conceivable only a decade earlier. We will review the current status of angiogenesis imaging and targeted therapy using theranostic nanoplatforms and complementary prodrugs developed at CTRAIN.
Declaration of interest: There is no conflict of interest that could be perceived as prejudicing the impartiality of the research reported.
Funding: No specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sector.