Computational modeling of Magnetic Nanoparticles for Ultrasound Detection and Targeted Hyperthermia of the Sentinel Lymph Nodes

Breast cancer tumors spread to the rest of the body through the sentinel lymph nodes (the first lymph node to receive lymphatic drainage from a tumor). The metastases of breast cancer can be controlled by the detection and removal of these nodes.  The surgical removal of the auxillary lymph nodes and perform biopsy tests is the only reliable way to detect and remove the nodes.  This procedure can result in significant morbidity. This project is for developing a minimally invasive procedure for the combined detection and destruction of the sentinel lymph nodes using magnetic nanoparticles (magnetite).  It has been shown that by injecting magnetite preparation injected near a breast tumor, the nanoparticles accumulates in the sentinel lymph nodes.  It is proposed that the magnetic nanoparticles can tracked to the sentinel lymph nodes using ultrasound imaging techniques.  Next, alternating magnetic fields (400-600 kHz, ~0.01 Tesla) will heat the particles and the nodes to ~ 43 ° C which induces tumor cell death. This thermal therapy is known as hyperthermia.  Computational models will be developed to predict the efficacy of this method and to provide insights into the physical basis of this treatment.  The mathematical models will be a guide in the building of prototypes devices, from the bench-top, to pre-clinical and to the clinical stages. This project will develop technology for the detection and destruction of the sentinel lymph nodes using magnetite nanoparticles. 

Faculty Supervisor:

Dr. Michael C. Kolios


George A. Noble



Physics / Astronomy


Life sciences


Ryerson University



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