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Extra resources for 61.Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
Blood Clots. Breaking up unwanted blood clots (thrombolysis) is a difficult and often invasive process. Studies during the last decade (108–110) indicate that 1 MHz ultrasound at intensities of 1 W/cm2 to 8 W/cm2 accelerates the enzymatic reactions in thrombolysis rather than causing irreversible mechanical fragmentation via a process known as ultrasoundenhanced thrombolysis. Ultrasound does so by enhancing the transport of reactants. Experiments in vitro demonstrate that ultrasound increases transport of plasminogen activators both into and within thrombi (111,112).
This rate of change remained positive but became quite small for further increases in applied pressure. Then they quantified the uptake of the reporter plasmid for luciferase along with the ability of the cells to proliferate. 4 MPa. 4 MPa, which then leveled off at larger values of applied pressure. Among the conclusions one can draw from this and similar research is that ultrasound-mediated transfection works in vitro [and in vivo (96,97)] and that it correlates with inertial cavitation above a certain threshold of applied pressure.
They used lithotripter pulses to sonoporate leukemia cells in suspension with fluorescent dextran in vitro, over a range of molecular weights up to 2000 kDa. They also produced highly informative images of the results of sonoporation by using confocal microscopy. Without the lithotripter pulses, some low molecular weight fluorescent dextran shows up in the cells by endocytosis, as marked by the appearance of isolated, round, fluorescent patches. After applying ultrasound, the entire cell is fluorescent, suggesting that the intense pulses of ultrasound drive the dextran through the membrane bypassing endocytosis in a way that destroys almost half of the cells but leaves the other half able to reproduce.