A Two-Photon Microimaging-Microdevice System for Four-Dimensional Imaging of Local Drug Delivery in Tissues

Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Oct 29;22(21):11752. doi: 10.3390/ijms222111752.


Advances in the intratumor measurement of drug responses have included a pioneering biomedical microdevice for high throughput drug screening in vivo, which was further advanced by integrating a graded-index lens based two-dimensional fluorescence micro-endoscope to monitor tissue responses in situ across time. While the previous system provided a bulk measurement of both drug delivery and tissue response from a given region of the tumor, it was incapable of visualizing drug distribution and tissue responses in a three-dimensional (3D) way, thus missing the critical relationship between drug concentration and effect. Here we demonstrate a next-generation system that couples multiplexed intratumor drug release with continuous 3D spatial imaging of the tumor microenvironment via the integration of a miniaturized two-photon micro-endoscope. This enables optical sectioning within the live tissue microenvironment to effectively profile the entire tumor region adjacent to the microdevice across time. Using this novel microimaging-microdevice (MI-MD) system, we successfully demonstrated the four-dimensional imaging (3 spatial dimensions plus time) of local drug delivery in tissue phantom and tumors. Future studies include the use of the MI-MD system for monitoring of localized intra-tissue drug release and concurrent measurement of tissue responses in live organisms, with applications to study drug resistance due to nonuniform drug distribution in tumors, or immune cell responses to anti-cancer agents.

Keywords: biomedical microdevice; in vivo testing; local drug delivery; optical sectioning; tumors; two-photon micro-endoscopy.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Chickens
  • Drug Delivery Systems / instrumentation*
  • Mice
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / diagnostic imaging*
  • Optical Imaging / instrumentation*
  • Phantoms, Imaging