WARF: P06377US

Synthesis of Magnetic Resonance Imaging Contrast Agents Using Ring-Opening Metathesis Polymerization


Laura Kiessling, Ronald Raines, Matthew Allen

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) is seeking commercial partners interested in developing sensitive and versatile contrast agents for MRI.
OVERVIEWMagnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a powerful diagnostic method in which three-dimensional images of body tissues are obtained. Contrast agents are administered prior to imaging to enhance specific features of an image, improving the sensitivity and utility of MRI. Hydroxypyridonate (HOPO)-based gadolinium ion chelates are more effective at enhancing contrast in MRI images than other contrast agents.
THE INVENTIONUW-Madison researchers have developed sensitive and versatile polymer-based contrast agents for MRI. The contrast agents were synthesized using ring opening metathesis polymerization (ROMP), a powerful synthesis method for creating biologically-active polymers. During this process, HOPO-based chelating moieties were integrated into benzonorbornadiene backbone units to create a polymer capable of binding gadolinium at multiple sites.
  • MRI
  • Provides contrast agents with extraordinary sensitivity and versatility
  • Contrast agents can be modified for different uses.
  • ROMP yields polymers of well-defined length and can produce polymers with multiple sites for functionalization.
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For current licensing status, please contact Jeanine Burmania at or 608-960-9846.
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