Multimodal Nanoprobes to target cerebrovascular amyloid in Alzheimer's disease brain

Kristen M. Jaruszewski, Geoffry L. Curran, Suresh K. Swaminathan, Jens T. Rosenberg, Samuel C. Grant, Subramanian Ramakrishnan, Val J. Lowe, Joseph F. Poduslo, Karunya K. Kandimalla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) results from the accumulation of Aβ proteins primarily within the media and adventitia of small arteries and capillaries of the cortex and leptomeninges. CAA affects a majority of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients and is associated with a rapid decline in cognitive reserve. Unfortunately, there is no pre-mortem diagnosis available for CAA. Furthermore, treatment options are few and relatively ineffective. To combat this issue, we have designed nanovehicles (nanoparticles-IgG4.1) capable of targeting cerebrovascular amyloid (CVA) and serving as early diagnostic and therapeutic agents. These nanovehicles were loaded with Gadolinium (Gd) based (Magnevist®) magnetic resonance imaging contrast agents or single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) agents, such as 125I. In addition, the nanovehicles carry either anti-inflammatory and anti-amyloidogenic agents such as curcumin or immunosuppressants such as dexamethasone, which were previously shown to reduce cerebrovascular inflammation. Owing to the anti-amyloid antibody (IgG4.1) grafted on the surface, the nanovehicles are capable of specifically targeting CVA deposits. The nanovehicles effectively marginate from the blood flow to the vascular wall as determined by using quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring (QCM-D) technology. They demonstrate excellent distribution to the brain vasculature and target CVA, thus providing MRI and SPECT contrast specific to the CVA in the brain. In addition, they also display the potential to carry therapeutic agents to reduce cerebrovascular inflammation associated with CAA, which is believed to trigger hemorrhage in CAA patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1967-1976
Number of pages10
Issue number6
StatePublished - Feb 2014


  • Alzheimer's disease (AD)
  • Brain targeting
  • Cerebrovascular amyloid (CVA)
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
  • Nanovehicles
  • Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Biophysics
  • Biomaterials
  • Mechanics of Materials


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