Comparison of methods for evaluating radiolabelled Annexin A5 uptake in pre-clinical PET oncological studies

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Purpose: The uptakes of radiolabel led AnnexinA5 (AnxA5) and a size-matched control protein in experimental tumours were evaluated by kinetic analyses and compared with standard uptake values (SUVs) to investigate whether the method of analysis may impact on the conclusions that can be drawn. Procedures: PET scans of the 11C-labelled proteins performed in untreated and doxorubicin-treated mice with head and neck carcinoma xenografts were retrospectively analysed. The appropriateness of using the Logan graphical analyses for reversibly binding radiotracers in these models was evaluated and confirmed. Distribution volume ratios (DVRs) of the regions of interest to reference muscle tissue were compared to those based on the image-derived input function from arterial blood. SUVs were calculated in the same individuals. Results: DVRs based on reference muscle tissue gave results similar to those based on the arterial blood and may be preferred since they are simpler to calculate. In the inter-group comparisons of baseline versus chemotherapy treatment or AnxA5 versus control protein, differences in DVR quantifications had a 20- to 40-fold higher statistical significance than differences in SUVs. As quantified using the control protein, the amount of free ligand in the vascular space of tumours may be large due to enhanced permeability and retention (EPR) contributions at baseline and affected during treatment, which has implications for quantifications of the specifically bound radioligand. Conclusions: These results demonstrate that the quantification method as well as the controls used can be important for interpreting the uptake in tumours of the medium-sized protein ligand AnxA5 and its use in monitoring the effects of therapy on cell death in the tumours. Advances in knowledge and implications for patient care: These results provide additional support for the recognition that more detailed investigations on the effects of the tumour microenvironment on the targeting capability of imaging radiopharmaceuticals are needed.




Grafström, J., & Stone-Elander, S. (2014). Comparison of methods for evaluating radiolabelled Annexin A5 uptake in pre-clinical PET oncological studies. Nuclear Medicine and Biology, 41(10), 793–800.

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