MRI: Development of an Instrument for Quantitative Characterization of Behavior of Magnetic Particles and Magnetically-Labeled Biomaterials in Emerging Applications
Mark Swihart Principal Investigator
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1337860<br/>Swihart<br/><br/>The PIs will develop an integrated multifunctional stand-alone instrument with unique capabilities for imaging, tracking, and characterizing coupled magnetic, thermal, transport, photonic and biofunctional properties and behavior of magnetic particles (MPs) and magnetically labeled biomaterials (MLBs), in situ, for a broad range of applications. The objectives are to integrate into one platform, state-of-the-art techniques that combine (i) the ability to track and characterize the dynamics of unlabeled MPs as small as 20 nm in diameter, (ii) high temporal resolution (up to 500,000 fps), and (iii) hyperspectral imaging (~2 nm wavelength resolution in the 400-900<br/>nm range, pixel-by-pixel) with high optical resolution. They will co-develop and incorporate custom-designed magnetic field sources to produce prescribed 3D magnetic fields (for field-directed manipulation) and an RF source (for heating), combined with custom-designed magnetically-functional microfluidic flow cells that will produce controllable flow fields and enable sample manipulation during imaging. Custom user-friendly computational magneto-fluidics software will be integrated as part of the instrument to enable fundamental understanding and facilitate interpretation of experimental results. A highly interdisciplinary team of researchers with complimentary expertise will lead this effort. Development of the proposed instrument will advance fundamental understanding of physical properties and behavior of MPs and MLBs and the dynamics of interacting populations of such particles, in situ, under well-characterized and adjustable flow fields and in the presence of 3D static and low frequency and/or RF magnetic fields. Moreover, the instrument, with its integrated unique state-of-the-art capabilities, combining high resolution nanoparticle tracking and characterization, hyperspectral microscopy, thermal imaging and high frame rate imaging, represents a significant contribution to the fields of optical engineering, nanoparticle characterization, and bioimaging that will enable researchers to elucidate fundamental phenomena in fields that employ MPs/MLBs.