New targets identification and probe development are one of critical components in Molecular Imaging field to fit the requirement of novel imaging techniques and strategies. We have developed several imaging probes through in vitro or in vivo peptide phage screen of peptide display phage libraries. Currently, we are working on several novel imaging probes and making the effort to promote bench-to-bedside translation of these imaging probes.
Reporter genes act as endogenous markers to facilitate visualization of cellular/molecular events. Previously, we have demonstrated that expression of sodium iodide sympoter (NIS) could be monitored noninvasively through NIS-mediated accumulation of various radionuclides. Besides NIS, we are applying bioluminescence imaging using Firefly and Renilla luciferase as the reporter and PET imaging with HSV-1 tk reporter in several research projects. New reporter gene constructs are also being constructed to visualize various physiopathological processes.
Accurate quantification of the images is the prerequisite to apply molecular imaging techniques in therapy response monitoring. The difficulty lies in how to establish a robust correlation between imaging readout and antigen level based on non-invasive images. Currently, we are pursuing on several projects to improve the imaging data quantification through dynamic imaging and compartment modeling