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Proceedings Paper

Photoacoustic imaging of gene expression using tyrosinase as a reporter gene
Author(s): Robert J. Paproski; Alexander Forbrich; Tyler Harrison; Mary Hitt; Roger J. Zemp
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Paper Abstract

Optical reporter genes, such as green fluorescence protein, are powerful research tools that allow visualization of gene expression. We have successfully used tyrosinase as a reporter gene for photoacoustic imaging. Tyrosinase is the key regulatory enzyme in the production of melanin which has a broad optical absorption spectrum. MCF-7 cells were stably transfected with tyrosinase under the control of an inducible promoter. For photoacoustic experiments, MCF-7 cells were resuspended at 108 cells/mL and injected in 700 μm (inner diameter) plastic tubing. Photoacoustic signal of MCF-7 cells expressing tyrosinase were >20-fold greater than those of untransfected MCF-7 cells. Photoacoustic signal of tyrosinaseexpressing MCF-7 cells were approximately 2-fold lesser and greater than those of blood at 576 and 650 nm, respectively, suggesting that photoacoustic signal from blood and tyrosinase-expressing cells can be separated by dualwavelength analysis. Photoacoustic signal from tyrosinase-expressing MCF-7 cells covered by chicken tissue could even be detected at a laser penetration depth of 4 cm, suggesting that tyrosinase can be used to image gene expression in relatively deep tissues. The current data suggests that tyrosinase is a strong reporter gene for photoacoustic imaging.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 February 2011
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7899, Photons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2011, 78991H (17 February 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.875197
Show Author Affiliations
Robert J. Paproski, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
Alexander Forbrich, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
Tyler Harrison, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
Mary Hitt, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)
Roger J. Zemp, Univ. of Alberta (Canada)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7899:
Photons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2011
Alexander A. Oraevsky; Lihong V. Wang, Editor(s)

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