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Synthesis and preliminary biological evaluation of O-2((2-[(18)F]fluoroethyl)methylamino)ethyltyrosine ([(18)F]FEMAET) as a potential cationic amino acid PET tracer for tumor imaging


Chiotellis, Aristeidis; Müller, Adrienne; Weyermann, Karin; Leutwiler, Dominique S; Schibli, Roger; Ametamey, Simon M; Krämer, Stefanie D; Mu, Linjing (2014). Synthesis and preliminary biological evaluation of O-2((2-[(18)F]fluoroethyl)methylamino)ethyltyrosine ([(18)F]FEMAET) as a potential cationic amino acid PET tracer for tumor imaging. Amino acids, 46(8):1947-1959.

Abstract

Amino acid transport is an attractive target for oncologic imaging. Despite a high demand of cancer cells for cationic amino acids, their potential as PET probes remains unexplored. Arginine, in particular, is involved in a number of biosynthetic pathways that significantly influence carcinogenesis and tumor biology. Cationic amino acids are transported by several cationic transport systems including, ATB(0,+) (SLC6A14), which is upregulated in certain human cancers including cervical, colorectal and estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer. In this work, we report the synthesis and preliminary biological evaluation of a new cationic analog of the clinically used PET tumor imaging agent O-(2-[(18)F]fluroethyl)-L-tyrosine ([(18)F]FET), namely O-2((2-[(18)F]fluoroethyl)methylamino)ethyltyrosine ([(18)F]FEMAET). Reference compound and precursor were prepared by multi-step approaches. Radiosynthesis was achieved by no-carrier-added nucleophilic [(18)F]fluorination in 16-20% decay-corrected yields with radiochemical purity >99%. The new tracer showed good stability in vitro and in vivo. Cell uptake assays demonstrated that FEMAET and [(18)F]FEMAET accumulate in prostate cancer (PC-3) and small cell lung cancer cells (NCI-H69), with an energy-dependent mechanism. Small animal PET imaging with NCI-H69 xenograft-bearing mice revealed good tumor visualization comparable to [(18)F]FET and low brain uptake, indicating negligible transport across the blood-brain barrier. In conclusion, the non-natural cationic amino acid PET probe [(18)F]FEMAET accumulates in cancer cells in vitro and in vivo with possible involvement of ATB(0,+).

Amino acid transport is an attractive target for oncologic imaging. Despite a high demand of cancer cells for cationic amino acids, their potential as PET probes remains unexplored. Arginine, in particular, is involved in a number of biosynthetic pathways that significantly influence carcinogenesis and tumor biology. Cationic amino acids are transported by several cationic transport systems including, ATB(0,+) (SLC6A14), which is upregulated in certain human cancers including cervical, colorectal and estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer. In this work, we report the synthesis and preliminary biological evaluation of a new cationic analog of the clinically used PET tumor imaging agent O-(2-[(18)F]fluroethyl)-L-tyrosine ([(18)F]FET), namely O-2((2-[(18)F]fluoroethyl)methylamino)ethyltyrosine ([(18)F]FEMAET). Reference compound and precursor were prepared by multi-step approaches. Radiosynthesis was achieved by no-carrier-added nucleophilic [(18)F]fluorination in 16-20% decay-corrected yields with radiochemical purity >99%. The new tracer showed good stability in vitro and in vivo. Cell uptake assays demonstrated that FEMAET and [(18)F]FEMAET accumulate in prostate cancer (PC-3) and small cell lung cancer cells (NCI-H69), with an energy-dependent mechanism. Small animal PET imaging with NCI-H69 xenograft-bearing mice revealed good tumor visualization comparable to [(18)F]FET and low brain uptake, indicating negligible transport across the blood-brain barrier. In conclusion, the non-natural cationic amino acid PET probe [(18)F]FEMAET accumulates in cancer cells in vitro and in vivo with possible involvement of ATB(0,+).

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Nuclear Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Date:August 2014
Deposited On:11 Feb 2015 16:28
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 19:06
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0939-4451
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00726-014-1754-7
PubMed ID:24802247

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