Molecular imaging is a fast growing field in biomedical research. The discovery, development and continual improvement of molecular probes are important for ongoing research efforts in molecular imaging. Human serum albumin (HSA) offers favorable charac-teristics and opportunities as a platform protein for molecular imaging probe discovery and optimization. It has many advantages, includ-ing alternation of biodistribution and pharmacokinetic properties of molecular imaging probes, enhancing the blood half-life of bio-molecules, and making these molecules multivalent, all of which make HSA a promising carrier for cancer-targeted imaging and therapy. Numerous studies have focused on the development and application of HSA-based cancer imaging and treatment. This review gives a brief account of albumin-based molecular probes, focusing on their applications in cancer molecular imaging, such as PET/SPECT, MRI and optical imaging.
Keywords: Human serum albumin (HSA), molecular imaging, PET, optical imaging, cancer, biodistribution, molecular imaging probes, cancer-targeted imaging, positron emission tomography (PET), single photon emission tomography (SPECT)
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