ISSN 1305-3825 | E-ISSN 1305-3612
Interventional Radiology - Original Article
Does Doxorubicin survive thermal ablation? Results of an ex vivo bench top study
1 Department of Radiology, University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois, USA  
2 Department of Radiology, Division of Interventional Radiology, University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois, USA  
3 Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy, College of Pharmacy, University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System, Chicago, IL, USA  
Diagn Interv Radiol ; : -


Purpose: To test the hypothesis that doxorubicin (DOX) survives thermal ablative heating in an ex vivo model of combined transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) and thermal ablation.


Methods: Fresh porcine psoas major muscle (3 samples, 15x10x3 cm) was submerged in aqueous DOX solution (60 mcg/mL, 0.1 M) for 24 hours to passively saturate tissue. DOX-infused tissue was then dried and treated with microwave ablation (MWA), performed using a 2.45 GHz antenna (Neuwave Medical) at 65W for 2, 5, and 10 minutes. Ablations were repeated in triplicate (9 total). Tissue was then sampled at both ablated and unablated (control) sites, and DOX concentration was quantified via ultra-high performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (UHPLC-MS/MS), with samples analyzed in triplicate. Tissue DOX levels in ablation and control groups were compared using 1-way ANOVA.


Results: Homogeneous DOX uptake into porcine tissue was evident in 100% (3/3) instances. Mean DOX concentration in unablated tissue was 8.0±2.2 mcg/mL. MWA was technically successful in 100% (9/9) instances, with tissue heating to 95-100 °C. Mean tissue DOX concentration showed progressive reduction with increasing ablation time, measuring 6.7±1.3, 4.9±0.9, and 4.8±1.3 mcg/mL in MWA treated tissue after 2, 5, and 10 minutes. Differences in tissue DOX levels between unablated tissue and MWA groups were statistically significant (P <0.001).


Conclusion: Contrary to the initial hypothesis, tissue DOX concentration progressively decreased after MWA of longer ablation times. These results suggest that TACE followed by ablation may result in lower intra-tumoral DOX than would otherwise be anticipated for TACE alone.

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