Minimally invasive method for the point-of-care quantification of lymphatic vessel function.

Polomska, Anna K; Proulx, Steven Thomas; Brambilla, Davide; Fehr, Daniel; Bonmarin, Mathias; Brändli, Simon; Meboldt, Mirko; Steuer, Christian; Vasileva, Tsvetina; Reinke, Nils; Leroux, Jean-Christophe; Detmar, Michael (2019). Minimally invasive method for the point-of-care quantification of lymphatic vessel function. JCI insight, 4(4) JCI Insight 10.1172/jci.insight.126515

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Current clinical methods for the evaluation of lymphatic vessel function, crucial for early diagnosis and evaluation of treatment response of several pathological conditions, in particular of postsurgical lymphedema, are based on complex and mainly qualitative imaging techniques. To address this unmet medical need, we established a simple strategy for the painless and quantitative assessment of cutaneous lymphatic function. We prepared a lymphatic-specific tracer formulation, consisting of the clinically approved near-infrared fluorescent dye, indocyanine green, and the solubilizing surfactant Kolliphor HS15. The tracer was noninvasively delivered to the dermal layer of the skin using MicronJet600 hollow microneedles, and the fluorescence signal decay at the injection site was measured over time using a custom-made, portable detection device. The decay rate of fluorescence signal in the skin was used as a direct measure of lymphatic vessel drainage function. With this method, we could quantify impaired lymphatic clearance in transgenic mice lacking dermal lymphatics and distinguish distinct lymphatic clearance patterns in pigs in different body locations and under manual stimulus. Overall, this method has the potential for becoming a noninvasive and quantitative clinical "office test" for lymphatic function assessment.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Theodor Kocher Institute

UniBE Contributor:

Proulx, Steven Thomas


500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




JCI Insight




Ursula Zingg-Zünd

Date Deposited:

13 Nov 2019 12:43

Last Modified:

13 Nov 2019 12:43

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Dermatology Diagnostic imaging Lymph Vascular Biology




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