A near-infrared probe for non-invasively monitoring cerebrospinal fluid flow by 18F-positron emitting tomography and fluorescence

Hua Guo, Harikrishna Kommidi, Carl C. Lekaye, Jason Koutcher, Martin S. Judenhofer, Simon R. Cherry, Amy P. Wu, Oguz Akin, Mark M. Souweidane, Omer Aras, Zhaohui Zhu, Richard Ting

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose: Knowing the precise flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is important in the management of multiple neurological diseases. Technology for non-invasively quantifying CSF flow would allow for precise localization of injury and assist in evaluating the viability of certain devices placed in the central nervous system (CNS). Methods: We describe a near-infrared fluorescent dye for accurately monitoring CSF flow by positron emission tomography (PET) and fluorescence. IR-783, a commercially available near-infrared dye, was chemically modified and radiolabeled with fluorine-18 to give [18F]-IR783-AMBF3. [18F]-IR783-AMBF3 was intrathecally injected into the rat models with normal and aberrant CSF flow and evaluated by the fluorescence and PET/MRI or PET/CT imaging modes. Results: IR783-AMBF3 was clearly distributed in CSF-containing volumes by PET and fluorescence. We compared IR783-AMBF3 (fluorescent at 778/793 nm, ex/em) to a shorter-wavelength, fluorescein equivalent (fluorescent at 495/511 nm, ex/em). IR783-AMBF3 was superior for its ability to image through blood (hemorrhage) and for imaging CSF-flow, through-skin, in subdural-run lumboperitoneal shunts. IR783-AMBF3 was safe under the tested dosage both in vitro and in vivo. Conclusion: The superior imaging properties of IR783-AMBF3 could lead to enhanced accuracy in the treatment of patients and would assist surgeons in non-invasively diagnosing diseases of the CNS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number37
JournalEJNMMI Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020


  • CNS disease
  • CSF flow
  • Fluorescence
  • Non-invasively
  • Positron emission tomography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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