Intravital microscopy imaging approaches for image-guided drug delivery systems

Dickson K. Kirui, Mauro Ferrari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Rapid technical advances in the field of non-linear microscopy have made intravital microscopy a vital pre-clinical tool for research and development of imaging-guided drug delivery systems. The ability to dynamically monitor the fate of macromolecules in live animals provides invaluable information regarding properties of drug carriers (size, charge, and surface coating), physiological, and pathological processes that exist between point-of-injection and the projected of site of delivery, all of which influence delivery and effectiveness of drug delivery systems. In this Review, we highlight how integrating intravital microscopy imaging with experimental designs (in vitro analyses and mathematical modeling) can provide unique information critical in the design of novel disease-relevant drug delivery platforms with improved diagnostic and therapeutic indexes. The Review will provide the reader an overview of the various applications for which intravital microscopy has been used to monitor the delivery of diagnostic and therapeutic agents and discuss some of their potential clinical applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)528-541
Number of pages14
JournalCurrent Drug Targets
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015


  • Biological barriers
  • Drug delivery
  • Intravital microscopy
  • Therapeutic efficacy
  • Vascular transport

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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