Efficacy of Sonothrombolysis Using Acoustically Activated Perflutren Nanodroplets versus Perflutren Microbubbles

Soufiane el Kadi, Lijun Qian, Ping Zeng, John Lof, Elizabeth Stolze, Feng Xie, Albert C. van Rossum, Otto Kamp, Carr Everbach, Thomas R. Porter

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5 Citations (Scopus)


Nanoscale-diameter liquid droplets from commercially available microbubbles may optimize thrombus permeation and subsequent thrombus dissolution (TD). Thrombi were made using fresh porcine arterial whole blood and placed in an in vitro vascular simulation. A diagnostic ultrasound probe in contact with a tissue-mimicking phantom tested intermittent high-mechanical-index (HMI) fundamental multipulse (focused ultrasound [FUS], 1.8 MHz) versus harmonic single-pulse (HUS, 1.3 MHz) modes during a 10-min infusion of Definity nanodroplets (DNDs), Definity microbubbles (DMBs) or saline. The ability of FUS and intravenous DNDs to improve epicardial and microvascular flow was then tested in four pigs with left anterior descending thrombotic occlusion. Sixty in vitro thrombi were tested, 20 in each group. Percentage TD was significantly higher for DND-treated thrombi than DMB-treated thrombi and controls (DNDs: 42.4%, DMBs: 26.7%, saline: 15.0%; p < 0.0001 vs. control). The highest %TD was seen in the HMI FUS-treated DND group (51 ± 17% TD). HMI FUS detected droplet activation within the risk area in three of four pigs with left anterior descending thrombotic occlusion and re-canalized the epicardial vessel in two. DNDs with intermittent diagnostic HMI ultrasound resulted in significantly more intravascular TD than DMBs and have potential for coronary and risk area thrombolysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1814-1825
Number of pages12
JournalUltrasound in Medicine and Biology
Issue number7
Early online date2021
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021


  • Droplets
  • Microbubbles
  • Perfluoropropane
  • Ultrasound contrast
  • Vascular thrombosis

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