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Pineapple-based standardised contrast agent for MR cholangiography

biliary tree pathologyContrast agentImagingMagnetic Resonance


Magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) represents the gold standard for the evaluation of the anatomy and for the diagnosis of biliary and pancreatic pathologies. This technique is performed after oral administration of contrast media useful for eliminating the high signal coming from the liquids contained within the gastro-intestinal tract, which could overlap and mask that of the liquids contained in the biliary and pancreatic tracts, thus preventing their correct evaluation. Currently in medical-diagnostic practice some fruit juices – including pineapple juice – are used as contrast agents for patients undergoing MRCP, representing a pharmacological alternative. In published clinical studies, however, commercially available fruit juices are used, with different formulations, in particular not standardized either in terms of quantity of metallic elements contained or in total quantities of juice to be taken.

Technical features

The element responsible for the superparamagnetic effect of the juices is Manganese (Mn2 +). However, the Mn2 + content is not specified in commercial products and therefore there is a risk of administering a juice with a concentration of Mn lower than what is necessary to obtain the superparamagnetic effect, compromising the diagnostic quality of the examination. The patent protects the specific formulation of the contrast medium, a natural pineapple juice suitable for MRCP use, standardized both for its Mn2 + content (in mg / dl), to maximize the superparamagnetic effect, even after dilution in the juice. gastric juice, both in terms of the overall dose of juice (in ml) that can be used in a single dose (150ml) and sealed to be administered orally to each patient, regardless of their soma and their content of gastrointestinal fluids. This product therefore guarantees maximum effectiveness in breaking down the intestinal signal, at the same time reducing waste and contamination at the time of administration. The effectiveness of the single dose was validated on a sample of over 600 patients and compared with the standard dose previously used (300 ml), demonstrating comparable results. The halving of the total quantity makes the administration suitable even for patients who are able to take only minimal quantities of liquids, in relation to their clinical conditions. TLR: 3/4.

Possible Applications

  • Magnetic Resonance Cholangiopancreatography (MRCP)


  • Low costs and ease of production;
  • Standardised formulation suitable for all patients with excellent palatability;
  • Reduction of waste (single dose for single patient) and contamination.