Lectin-functionalized mesoporous silica nanoparticles for endoscopic detection of premalignant colonic lesions

Nai Tzu Chen, Jeffrey S. Souris, Shih Hsun Cheng, Chia Hui Chu, Yu Chao Wang, Vani Konda, Urszula Dougherty, Marc Bissonnette, Chung Yuan Mou, Chin Tu Chen, Leu Wei Lo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the leading causes of cancer-deaths worldwide. Methods for the early in situ detection of colorectal adenomatous polyps and their precursors – prior to their malignancy transformation into CRC – are urgently needed. Unfortunately at present, the primary diagnostic method, colonoscopy, can only detect polyps and carcinomas by shape/morphology; with sessile polyps more likely to go unnoticed than polypoid lesions. Here we describe our development of polyp-targeting, fluorescently-labeled mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) that serve as targeted endoscopic contrast agents for the early detection of colorectal polyps and cancer. In vitro cell studies, ex vivo histopathological analysis, and in vivo colonoscopy and endoscopy of murine colorectal cancer models, demonstrate significant binding specificity of our nanoconstructs to pathological lesions via targeting aberrant α-L-fucose expression. Our findings strongly suggest that lectin-functionalized fluorescent MSNs could serve as a promising endoscopic contrast agent for in situ diagnostic imaging of premalignant colonic lesions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1941-1952
Number of pages12
JournalNanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology, and Medicine
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Colorectal tumors
  • Endoscopic
  • Mesoporous silica nanoparticle
  • Ulex europaeus Agglutinin 1 (UEA1)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • General Materials Science
  • Pharmaceutical Science


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