Theranostics 2016; 6(9):1393-1402. doi:10.7150/thno.15122


Interventional Nanotheranostics of Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma

Junjie Li1, Fengyong Liu2,3, Sanjay Gupta2, Chun Li1✉

1. Department of Cancer Systems Imaging, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77054, USA.
2. Department of Interventional Radiology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.
3. Department of Interventional Radiology, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing 100853, China.


Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) accounts for over 90% of all pancreatic cancer. Nanoparticles (NPs) offer new opportunities for image-guided therapy owing to the unique physicochemical properties of the nanoscale effect and the multifunctional capabilities of NPs. However, major obstacles exist for NP-mediated cancer theranostics, especially in PDAC. The hypovascular nature of PDAC may impede the deposition of NPs into the tumor after systemic administration, and most NPs localize predominantly in the mononuclear phagocytic system, leading to a relatively poor tumor-to-surrounding-organ uptake ratio. Image guidance combined with minimally invasive interventional procedures may help circumvent these barriers to poor drug delivery of NPs in PDAC. Interventional treatments allow regional drug delivery, targeted vascular embolization, direct tumor ablation, and the possibility of disrupting the stromal barrier of PDAC. Interventional treatments also have potentially fewer complications, faster recovery, and lower cost compared with conventional therapies. This work is an overview of current image-guided interventional cancer nanotheranostics with specific attention given to their applications for the management of PDAC.

Keywords: Interventional oncology, photothermal ablation, irreversible electroporation, nanoparticles.

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How to cite this article:
Li J, Liu F, Gupta S, Li C. Interventional Nanotheranostics of Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma. Theranostics 2016; 6(9):1393-1402. doi:10.7150/thno.15122. Available from