Initiating and imaging cavitation from infused echo contrast agents through the EkoSonic catheter

Sonya R. Kennedy, Maxime Lafond, Kevin J. Haworth, Daniel Suarez Escudero, Dan Ionascu, Brion Frierson, Shaoling Huang, Melvin E. Klegerman, Tao Peng, David D. McPherson, Curtis Genstler & Christy K. Holland
Nature Scientific Reports 13 (1), 6191 2023


Ultrasound-enhanced delivery of therapeutic-loaded echogenic liposomes is under development for vascular applications using the EkoSonic Endovascular System. In this study, fibrin-targeted echogenic liposomes loaded with an anti-inflammatory agent were characterized before and after infusion through an EkoSonic catheter. Cavitation activity was nucleated by Definity or fibrin-targeted, drug-loaded echogenic liposomes infused and insonified with EkoSonic catheters. Passive cavitation imaging was used to quantify and map bubble activity in a flow phantom mimicking porcine arterial flow. Cavitation was sustained during 3-min infusions of Definity or echogenic liposomes along the distal 6 cm treatment zone of the catheter. Though the EkoSonic catheter was not designed specifically for cavitation nucleation, infusion of drug-loaded echogenic liposomes can be employed to trigger and sustain bubble activity for enhanced intravascular drug delivery.

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