Fluorescence imaging of macrophages in atherosclerotic plaques using plasmonic gold nanorose

Tianyi Wang, Veronika Sapozhnikova, J. Jacob Mancuso, Brian Willsey, Jinze Qiu, Li L. Ma, Xiankai Li, Keith P. Johnston, Marc D. Feldman, Thomas E. Milner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Macrophages are one of the most important cell types involved in the progression of atherosclerosis which can lead to myocardial infarction. To detect macrophages in atherosclerotic plaques, plasmonic gold nanorose is introduced as a nontoxic contrast agent for fluorescence imaging. We report macrophage cell culture and ex vivo tissue studies to visualize macrophages targeted by nanorose using scanning confocal microscopy. Atherosclerotic lesions were created in the aorta of a New Zealand white rabbit model subjected to a high cholesterol diet and double balloon injury. The rabbit was injected with nanoroses coated with dextran. A HeNe laser at 633 nm was used as an excitation light source and a acousto-optical beam splitter was utilized to collect fluorescence emission in 650-760 nm spectral range. Results of scanning confocal microscopy of macrophage cell culture and ex vivo tissue showed that nanoroses produce a strong fluorescence signal. The presence of nanorose in ex vivo tissue was further confirmed by photothermal wave imaging. These results suggest that scanning confocal microscopy can identify the presence and location of nanorose-loaded macrophages in atherosclerotic plaques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPhotonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics VII
StatePublished - Apr 12 2011
EventPhotonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics VII - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 22 2011Jan 24 2011

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


OtherPhotonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics VII
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA


  • Atherosclerosis
  • fluorescence imaging
  • macrophage
  • nanorose
  • photothermal wave imaging
  • scanning confocal microscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Fluorescence imaging of macrophages in atherosclerotic plaques using plasmonic gold nanorose'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this