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Nucl Med Biol. 2006 Nov;33(8):991-8.

In vitro and in vivo characterization of 177Lu-huA33: a radioimmunoconjugate against colorectal cancer.

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Division of Radiology, Department of Oncology, Radiology, and Clinical Immunology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden. <>



The humanized monoclonal antibody A33 (huA33) is a potential targeting agent against colorectal carcinoma since the A33 antigen is highly and homogenously expressed in >95% of all colorectal cancers, both primary tumors and metastases. The aim of this study was to determine the biodistribution and tumor-targeting ability of (177)Lu-labeled huA33.


huA33 was labeled with the beta-emitting therapeutic nuclide (177)Lu using the chelator CHX-A"-DTPA, and the properties of the (177)Lu-CHX-A"-huA33 ((177)Lu-huA33) conjugate was determined both in vitro and in vivo in a biodistribution study in nude mice xenografted with colorectal SW1222 tumor cells.


The (177)Lu-huA33 conjugate bound specifically to colorectal cancer cells in vitro (with a K(D) value of 2.3+/-0.3 nM, determined by a saturation assay) and in vivo. The tumor uptake of (177)Lu-huA33 was very high, peaking at 134+/-21%ID/g 72 h postinjection (pi). Normal tissue uptake was low; radioactivity concentration in blood (which had the second highest radioactivity concentration) was lower than in tumor at all time points studied (8 h to 10 days). The tumor-to-blood ratio increased with time, reaching 70+/-30, 10 days pi. Throughout the study, the uptake of (177)Lu in bone (known to accumulate free (177)Lu) was low, and the fraction of protein-bound (177)Lu in plasma samples was high (95% to 99%). This indicates high stability of the (177)Lu-huA33 conjugate in vivo.


The (177)Lu-huA33 conjugate shows a very favorable biodistribution, with an impressively high tumor uptake and high tumor-to-organ ratios, indicating that the conjugate may be suitable for radioimmunotherapy of colorectal cancer.

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