Duration of ultrasound-mediated enhanced plasma membrane permeability

Bart Lammertink, Roel Deckers, Gerrit Storm, Chrit Moonen, Clemens Bos

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45 Citations (Scopus)


Ultrasound (US) induced cavitation can be used to enhance the intracellular delivery of drugs by transiently increasing the cell membrane permeability. The duration of this increased permeability, termed temporal window, has not been fully elucidated. In this study, the temporal window was investigated systematically using an endothelial- and two breast cancer cell lines. Model drug uptake was measured as a function of time after sonication, in the presence of SonoVue™ microbubbles, in HUVEC, MDA-MB-468 and 4T1 cells. In addition, US pressure amplitude was varied in MDA-MB-468 cells to investigate its effect on the temporal window. Cell membrane permeability of HUVEC and MDA-MB-468 cells returned to control level within 1–2 h post-sonication, while 4T1 cells needed over 3 h. US pressure affected the number of cells with increased membrane permeability, as well as the temporal window in MDA-MB-468 cells. This study shows that the duration of increased membrane permeability differed between the cell lines and US pressures used here. However, all were consistently in the order of 1–3 h after sonication.
Original languageUndefined
Pages (from-to)92-98
JournalInternational journal of pharmaceutics
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • METIS-315203
  • IR-99930

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