Cerenkov Luminescence Imaging of Medical Isotopes

Nuclear Medicine Service, Department of Radiology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York 10065, USA.
Journal of Nuclear Medicine (Impact Factor: 5.56). 07/2010; 51(7):1123-30. DOI: 10.2967/jnumed.110.076521
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The development of novel multimodality imaging agents and techniques represents the current frontier of research in the field of medical imaging science. However, the combination of nuclear tomography with optical techniques has yet to be established. Here, we report the use of the inherent optical emissions from the decay of radiopharmaceuticals for Cerenkov luminescence imaging (CLI) of tumors in vivo and correlate the results with those obtained from concordant immuno-PET studies.
In vitro phantom studies were used to validate the visible light emission observed from a range of radionuclides including the positron emitters (18)F, (64)Cu, (89)Zr, and (124)I; beta-emitter (131)I; and alpha-particle emitter (225)Ac for potential use in CLI. The novel radiolabeled monoclonal antibody (89)Zr-desferrioxamine B [DFO]-J591 for immuno-PET of prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) expression was used to coregister and correlate the CLI signal observed with the immuno-PET images and biodistribution studies.
Phantom studies confirmed that Cerenkov radiation can be observed from a range of positron-, beta-, and alpha-emitting radionuclides using standard optical imaging devices. The change in light emission intensity versus time was concordant with radionuclide decay and was also found to correlate linearly with both the activity concentration and the measured PET signal (percentage injected dose per gram). In vivo studies conducted in male severe combined immune deficient mice bearing PSMA-positive, subcutaneous LNCaP tumors demonstrated that tumor-specific uptake of (89)Zr-DFO-J591 could be visualized by both immuno-PET and CLI. Optical and immuno-PET signal intensities were found to increase over time from 24 to 96 h, and biodistribution studies were found to correlate well with both imaging modalities.
These studies represent the first, to our knowledge, quantitative assessment of CLI for measuring radiotracer uptake in vivo. Many radionuclides common to both nuclear tomographic imaging and radiotherapy have the potential to be used in CLI. The value of CLI lies in its ability to image radionuclides that do not emit either positrons or gamma-rays and are, thus, unsuitable for use with current nuclear imaging modalities. Optical imaging of Cerenkov radiation emission shows excellent promise as a potential new imaging modality for the rapid, high-throughput screening of radiopharmaceuticals.

Download full-text


Available from: Jason P Holland, Aug 06, 2015
  • Source
    • "Likewise, the clinically approved Her2/neu tumor targeted antibody, trastuzumab, can be visualized with this technique. Long lived radionuclides such as 89 Zr (78.4h) [7] [33] and 124 I (100.2 h) [23] have been conjugated to the full sized monoclonal antibody to image tumors overexpressing the receptor in mouse models. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Cerenkov luminescence imaging (CLI) is an emerging hybrid modality that utilizes the light emission from many commonly used medical isotopes. Cerenkov radiation (CR) is produced when charged particles travel through a dielectric medium faster than the speed of light in that medium. First described in detail nearly 100 years ago, CR has only recently applied for biomedical imaging purposes. The modality is of considerable interest as it enables the use of widespread luminescence imaging equipment to visualize clinical diagnostic (all PET radioisotopes) and many therapeutic radionuclides. The amount of light detected in CLI applications is significantly lower than other that in other optical imaging techniques such as bioluminescence and fluorescence. However, significant advantages include the use of approved radiotracers and lack of an incident light source, resulting in high signal to background ratios. As well, multiple subjects may be imaged concurrently (up to 5 in common bioluminescent equipment), conferring both cost and time benefits. This review summarizes the field of Cerenkov luminescence imaging to date. Applications of CLI discussed include intraoperative radionuclide-guided surgery, monitoring of therapeutic efficacy, tomographic optical imaging capabilities, and the ability to perform multiplexed imaging using fluorophores excited by the Cerenkov radiation. While technical challenges still exist, Cerenkov imaging has materialized as an important molecular imaging modality.
    American Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging 01/2012; 2(2):163-73. · 3.25 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: 2-[(18)F]Fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose ((18)F-FDG) is a widely used PET radiotracer for the in vivo diagnosis of several diseases such as tumours. The positrons emitted by (18)F-FDG, travelling into tissues faster than the speed of light in the same medium, are responsible for Cerenkov radiation (CR) emission which is prevalently in the visible range. The purpose of this study is to show that CR escaping from tumour tissues of small living animals injected with (18)F-FDG can be detected with optical imaging (OI) techniques using a commercial optical instrument equipped with charge-coupled detectors (CCD). The theory behind the Cerenkov light emission and the source depth measurements using CR is first presented. Mice injected with (18)F-FDG or saline solution underwent dynamic OI acquisition and a comparison between images was performed. Multispectral analysis of the radiation was used to estimate the depth of the source of Cerenkov light. Small animal PET images were also acquired in order to compare the (18)F-FDG bio-distribution measured using OI and PET scanner. Cerenkov in vivo whole-body images of tumour-bearing mice and the measurements of the emission spectrum (560-660 nm range) are presented. Brain, kidneys and tumour were identified as a source of visible light in the animal body: the tissue time-activity curves reflected the physiological accumulation of (18)F-FDG in these organs. The identification is confirmed by the comparison between CR and (18)F-FDG images. These results will allow the use of conventional OI devices for the in vivo study of glucose metabolism in cancer and the assessment, for example, of anti-cancer drugs. Moreover, this demonstrates that (18)F-FDG can be employed as it is a bimodal tracer for PET and OI techniques.
    European Journal of Nuclear Medicine 09/2010; 38(1):120-7. DOI:10.1007/s00259-010-1630-y · 5.38 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Single wall carbon nanotube (SWCNT) constructs were covalently appended with radiometal-ion chelates (1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-1,4,7,10-tetraacetic acid [DOTA] or desferrioxamine B [DFO]) and the tumor neovascular-targeting antibody E4G10. The E4G10 antibody specifically targeted the monomeric vascular endothelial-cadherin (VE-cad) epitope expressed in the tumor angiogenic vessels. The construct specific activity and blood compartment clearance kinetics were significantly improved relative to corresponding antibodyalone constructs. We performed targeted radioimmunotherapy with a SWCNT-([(225)Ac]DOTA) (E4G10) construct directed at the tumor vasculature in a murine xenograft model of human colon adenocarcinoma (LS174T). The specific construct reduced tumor volume and improved median survival relative to controls. We also performed positron emission tomographic (PET) radioimmunoimaging of the tumor vessels with a SWCNT-([(89)Zr]DFO)(E4G10) construct in the same murine LS174T xenograft model and compared the results to appropriate controls. Dynamic and longitudinal PET imaging of LS174T tumor-bearing mice demonstrated rapid blood clearance (<1 hour) and specific tumor accumulation of the specific construct. Incorporation of the SWCNT scaffold into the construct design permitted us to amplify the specific activity to improve the signal-to-noise ratio without detrimentally impacting the immunoreactivity of the targeting antibody moiety. Furthermore, we were able to exploit the SWCNT pharmacokinetic (PK) profile to favorably alter the blood clearance and provide an advantage for rapid imaging. Near-infrared three-dimensional fluorescent-mediated tomography was used to image the LS174T tumor model, collect antibody-alone PK data, and calculate the number of copies of VE-cad epitope per cell. All of these studies were performed as a single administration of construct and were found to be safe and well tolerated by the murine model. These data have implications that support further imaging and radiotherapy studies using a SWCNT-based platform and focusing on the tumor vessels as the target.
    International Journal of Nanomedicine 10/2010; 5(1):783-802. DOI:10.2147/IJN.S13300 · 4.20 Impact Factor
Show more