Comparison of Ultrasmall Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Particles and Low Molecular Weight Contrast Agents to Detect Rejecting Transplanted Hearts With Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Invest Radiol. 2005 Oct;40(10):648-54. doi: 10.1097/


Purpose: This study compared 3 different contrast agents for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to determine whether their rate of permeability could discriminate between acutely rejecting and nonrejecting transplanted hearts.

Materials and methods: Heterotopic heart transplantation in rats was performed and animals were divided into allogeneic and syngeneic groups. At the sixth postoperative day, MRI was performed with 2 ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide particles of different sizes, unformulated NC 100150 and AMI-227, besides gadodiamide.

Results: For unformulated NC100150, the signal intensity between the groups differed at all times (P < 0.0001); for AMI-227, all times but 3 (P < 0.05). With low molecular weight gadolinium chelate, no discrimination between rejecting and nonrejecting groups could be made.

Conclusion: Acutely rejecting and nonrejecting transplanted hearts can be discriminated from each other using the difference in permeability assessed by blood pool agents and MRI. With first pass of gadolinium chelate no discrimination could be made between rejecting and nonrejecting grafts.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Contrast Media*
  • Dextrans
  • Ferrosoferric Oxide
  • Graft Rejection / etiology
  • Graft Rejection / pathology*
  • Heart Transplantation / adverse effects
  • Heart Transplantation / pathology*
  • Heterocyclic Compounds*
  • Image Enhancement / methods*
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted
  • Iron*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Magnetite Nanoparticles
  • Organometallic Compounds*
  • Oxides*
  • Rats
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Contrast Media
  • Dextrans
  • Heterocyclic Compounds
  • Magnetite Nanoparticles
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Oxides
  • ferumoxtran-10
  • gadolinium 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-N,N',N'',N'''-tetraacetate
  • Iron
  • Ferrosoferric Oxide