Eszter Boros

Eszter Boros, Assistant Professor, starting Fall 2017

M.S. University of Zurich, 2007
Ph.D. University of British Columbia, 2011
Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard Medical School/ MGH, 2011-2015


The Boros Group Website


Research focus

In our lab, we harness the rich structural diversity of metal complexes paired with their versatile luminescent and radioactive properties for the design of new metal-based molecular imaging probes and therapeutics for personalized medicine. We are interested in developing probes for the following applications:

Imaging and treatment of bacterial infections with siderophores

Antibiotic resistance is an imminent global health threat. Accelerated diagnosis and new life-saving treatments are needed to overcome resistance. Most pathogens have developed sophisticated mechanisms to sequester the essential metal ion Fe(III) from their host. This process involves Fe(III) chelators called siderophores. Naturally occurring and synthetic siderophores can act as Trojan horses to deliver antibiotics to the site of infection. These conjugates are referred to as sideromycins. We are exploring sideromycins as new therapeutic and imaging tools for the treatment of bacterial infections.

Metal-based probes for the multimodal imaging of cancer

The prognosis and survival of patients with aggressive cancers depends on the presence of positive tumor margins (defined as the presence of tumor cells in the surrounding area) post surgical resection. Combining radioactive and luminescent reporters in a targeted molecular probe has the potential to provide pre-operative nuclear imaging, real-time luminescence-guided surgery followed by ex vivo imaging with one single probe. The goal of this project is the design, synthesis and evaluation of metal-based bimodal probe systems that allow more thorough characterization of aggressive cancers for improved treatment plans and outcome.

ImmunoPET probes for the imaging of pulmonary fibrosis

Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) is a fatal lung disease, with death occurring on average within 3 years of diagnosis. IPF is markedly heterogeneous both in its progression and pathogenesis. ImmunoPET imaging with radiolabeled antibodies and antibody fragments could assess and monitor drug target abundance, target accessibility and drug uptake in individual patients, which provides an invaluable tool for a personalized medicine approach to IPF. For this purpose, we label antibodies targeting and inhibiting pro-fibrotic pathways with positron emitters using optimized radiolabeling and immunoconjugation techniques. The output of this work will be an immunoPET probe for pulmonary fibrosis that can be translated clinically, as well as improved radiolabeling technology for general immunoPET applications.


Work in our lab is multidisciplinary and encompasses: Organic and inorganic chemical synthesis, radiochemistry, analytical chemistry, biological chemistry, in vitro and in vivo imaging. We are interested in exploring and understanding the structure-activity relationships of the metal complexes we synthesize, placing us in the realm of medicinal chemistry with an inorganic twist!

Selected publications

Meimetis LG, Boros E, Carlson JC, Ran C, Caravan P, Weissleder, R. Bioorthogonal Fluorophore Linked DFO-​Technology Enabling Facile Chelator Quantification and Multimodal Imaging of Antibodies. Bioconjugate Chem. 201627, 257-63.

Boros E, Bowen AM, Josephson L, Vasdev N, Holland JP. Chelate-​free metal ion binding and heat-​induced radiolabeling of iron oxide nanoparticles. Chem. Sci. 20151, 225-36.

Boros E, Rybak-Akimova, E, Holland J, Rietz TA, Rotile NJ, Blasi F, Day H, Latifi R, Caravan P. Pycup – A bifunctional, cage-like ligand for 64Cu radiolabeling.  Mol. Pharmaceutics. 201411, 617–29.

Boros E, Polasek M, Zhang Z, Caravan P. Gd(DOTAla) – A single amino acid Gd-complex as a modular tool for high relaxivity MR contrast agent development. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012134, 19858–68.

Boros E, Ferreira CL, Cawthray JF, Price EW, Patrick BO, Wester DW, Adam MJ, Orvig C.  Acyclic Chelate with Ideal Properties for 68Ga PET Imaging Agent Elaboration. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010132, 15726-33.


For complete publication list, click here.

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