Date of Award

Fall 12-14-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Chemistry (MSChem)



First Advisor

Dr. Santimukul Santra, Department of Chemistry

Second Advisor

Dr. Irene Zegar, Department of Chemistry

Third Advisor

Dr. Dilip Paul, Department of Chemistry

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Cynthia Huffman, Department of Mathematics


Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is increasingly being used as a diagnostic tool for cancer. We propose a novel molecular probe, Gadolinium-DTPA disulfide-bonded Doxorubicin (Gd-DTPA-SS-Doxo) encapsulated in iron oxide which could provide a dual modality for detecting malignant growth while simultaneously targeting treatment options. We first synthesized Gd-DTPA-SS-Doxo followed by encapsulation within the poly (acrylic acid) (PAA) coating of iron oxide nanoparticle (IONP), producing a nanoprobe (IO-Gd-DTPA-SS-Doxo) with quenched longitudinal spin lattice magnetic relaxation (T1). After receptor-mediated internalization, Gd-DTPA-SS-Doxo is released from the nanoprobe’s polymeric coating due to the acidic microenvironment of the tumor. When the molecular probe is subjected to various enzymes present in the cancerous cells, the disulfide bond of the molecular probe is cleaved. This results in an intracellular release of Gd-DTPA complex and Doxo with subsequent T1 activation and cytotoxic effect respectively. Therefore, the proposed framework would give dual mode MR imaging of malignant growth, target ability and treatment for disease.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.