New magnetic-resonance-imaging-visible poly(ε-caprolactone)-based polyester for biomedical applications
A great deal of effort has been made since the 1990s to enlarge the field of magnetic resonance imaging. Better tissue contrast, more biocompatible contrast agents and the absence of any radiation for the patient are some of the many advantages of using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) rather than X-ray technology. But implantable medical devices cannot be visualized by conventional MRI and a tool therefore needs to be developed to rectify this. The synthesis of a new MRI-visible degradable polymer is described by grafting an MR contrast agent (DTPA-Gd) to a non-water-soluble, biocompatible and degradable poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL). The substitution degree, calculated by 1H nuclear magnetic resonance and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry, is close to 0.5% and proves to be sufficient to provide a strong and clear T1 contrast enhancement. This new MRI-visible polymer was coated onto a commercial mesh for tissue reinforcement using an airbrush system and enabled in vitro MR visualization of the mesh for at least 1 year. A stability study of the DTPA-Gd-PCL chelate in phosphate-buffered saline showed that a very low amount of gadolinium was released into the medium over 52 weeks, guaranteeing the safety of the device. This study shows that this new MRI-visible polymer has great potential for the MR visualization of implantable medical devices and therefore the post-operative management of patients.
Journal: Acta Biomaterialia - Volume 8, Issue 3, March 2012, Pages 1339–1347