Distribution of aerosols in mouse lobes by fluorescent imaging

Dandan Yi, Amir Naqwi, Angela Panoskaltsis-Mortari, Timothy Scott Wiedmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Better methods are needed to quantify the distribution of drug among the airways of the lungs of small animals to facilitate the development of agents that can target specific airways. Mice were exposed to aerosols of aluminum phthalocyanine tetrasulfonic acid (AlPCS) that ranged in concentration and size (0.2-2.8 μm). The trachea and lobes were removed and placed between glass slides, and fluorescent images were obtained at two different compression thicknesses. The intensity, normalized by the area, exposure time, and thickness, was then plotted as a function of compression thickness, from which the concentration and attenuation coefficient were estimated for each lobe and then for each pixel of the image. The latter was then used to generate an image reflective of the concentration. The lobe volume, concentration, and tissue attenuation of AlPCS was consistent among the lobes. The deposition fraction increased with decreasing particle size. The network of lines in the concentration image indicated that connective tissue has a lower concentration. The central airways were clearly evident in the images of mice exposed to the very small and large aerosols. This approach provides a rapid, economical means to obtain high resolution images of mouse lungs from which detailed analysis of the distribution of deposited aerosol particles can be obtained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)108-115
Number of pages8
JournalInternational journal of pharmaceutics
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Apr 15 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to thank Andrew Price and Angela Panoskaltsis-Mortari for assisting us early on in the imaging of mouse lungs. Dandan Yi was supported by the China Scholarship Council . In addition, Andrew Clarke, Logan Brentley, Na Young Kim, and Makin Osman expended effort in analyzing images. The work was supported in part by NIH grant HL081789 awarded to Powerscope Inc.


  • Aerosol
  • Aerosol distribution
  • Aluminum phthalocyanine tetrasulfonic acid
  • Fluorescent imaging
  • Lungs


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