Bimodal ultrasound and x-ray bioimaging properties of particulate calcium fluoride biomaterial

Cristhian Marcelo Chingo Aimacaña, Kevin O. Pila, Dilan A.Quinchiguango Perez, Alexis Debut, Mohamed F. Attia, Ralph Santos-Oliveira, Daniel C. Whitehead, Carlos Reinoso, Frank Alexis, Si Amar Dahoumane

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Ultrasound (US) and X-ray imaging are diagnostic methods that are commonly used to image internal body structures. Several organic and inorganic imaging contrast agents are commercially available. However, their synthesis and purification remain challenging, in addition to posing safety issues. Here, we report on the promise of widespread, safe, and easy-to-produce particulate calcium fluoride (part-CaF2) as a bimodal US and X-ray contrast agent. Pure and highly crystalline part-CaF2 is obtained using a cheap commercial product. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) depicts the morphology of these particles, while energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) confirms their chemical composition. Diffuse reflectance ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy highlights their insulating behavior. The X-ray diffraction (XRD) pattern reveals that part-CaF2 crystallizes in the face-centered cubic cell lattice. Further analyses regarding peak broadening are performed using the Scherrer and Williamson–Hall (W-H) methods, which pinpoint the small crystallite size and the presence of lattice strain. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) solely exhibits specific peaks related to CaF2, confirming the absence of any contamination. Additionally, in vitro cytotoxicity and in vivo maximum tolerated dose (MTD) tests prove the biocompatibility of part-CaF2. Finally, the results of the US and X-ray imaging tests strongly signal that part-CaF2 could be exploited in bi-modal bioimaging applications. These findings may shed a new light on calcium fluoride and the opportunities it offers in biomedical engineering.

Idioma originalInglés
Número de artículo5447
EstadoPublicada - sep. 2021
Publicado de forma externa


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