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Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging. 2004 Dec;31(12):1659-72.

[18F]FLT-PET in oncology: current status and opportunities.

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PET Center, Groningen University Hospital, Groningen, RB, The Netherlands.


In recent years, [18F]-fluoro-3'-deoxy-3'-L: -fluorothymidine ([18F]FLT) has been developed as a proliferation tracer. Imaging and measurement of proliferation with PET could provide us with a non-invasive staging tool and a tool to monitor the response to anticancer treatment. In this review, the basis of [18F]FLT as a proliferation tracer is discussed. Furthermore, an overview of the current status of [18F]FLT-PET research is given. The results of this research show that although [18F]FLT is a tracer that visualises cellular proliferation, it also has certain limitations. In comparison with the most widely used PET tracer, [18F]FDG, [18F]FLT uptake is lower in most cases. Furthermore, [18F]FLT uptake does not always reflect the tumour cell proliferation rate, for example during or shortly after certain chemotherapy regimens. The opportunities provided by, and the limitations of, [18F]FLT as a proliferation tracer are addressed in this review, and directions are given for further research, taking into account the strong and weak points of the new tracer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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