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J Nucl Med. 2007 Jan;48(1):56-63.

Initial experience with the radiotracer anti-1-amino-3-18F-fluorocyclobutane-1-carboxylic acid with PET/CT in prostate carcinoma.

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Division of Nuclear Medicine, Department of Radiology, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, USA.


Conventional imaging techniques have serious limitations in the detection, staging, and restaging of prostate carcinoma. Anti-1-amino-3-(18)F-fluorocyclobutane-1-carboxylic acid (anti-(18)F-FACBC)is a synthetic l-leucine analog that has excellent in vitro uptake within the DU-145 prostate carcinoma cell line and orthotopically implanted prostate tumor in nude rats. There is little renal excretion compared with (18)F-FDG. The present study examines anti-(18)F-FACBC uptake in patients with newly diagnosed and recurrent prostate carcinoma.


Fifteen patients with a recent diagnosis of prostate carcinoma (n = 9) or suspected recurrence (n = 6) underwent 65-min dynamic PET/CT of the pelvis after intravenous injection of 300-410 MBq anti-(18)F-FACBC followed by static body images. Each study was evaluated qualitatively and quantitatively. Maximum standardized uptake values were recorded in the prostate or prostate bed, and within lymph nodes at 4.5 min (early) and 20 min (delayed), and correlated with clinical, imaging and pathologic follow-up. Time-activity curves were also generated for benign and malignant tissue.


In the 8 patients with newly diagnosed prostate carcinoma who underwent dynamic scanning, visual analysis correctly identified the presence or absence of focal neoplastic involvement in 40 of 48 prostate sextants. Pelvic nodal status correlated with anti-(18)F-FACBC findings in 7 of 9 patients and was indeterminate in 2 of 9. In all 4 patients in whom there was proven recurrence, visual analysis was successful in identifying disease (1 prostate bed, 3 extraprostatic). In 3 of these patients, (111)In-capromab-pendetide had no significant uptake at nodal and skeletal foci. Malignant lymph node uptake in both the staging and restaging patients was significantly higher than benign nodal uptake. Though uptake faded with time, in all 6 patients with either lymph node metastases or recurrent prostate bed carcinoma, there was intense persistent uptake at 65 min.


Anti-(18)F-FACBC is a promising radiotracer for imaging prostate carcinoma. Radiotracer uptake was demonstrated in primary and metastatic disease. Future research should investigate the mechanism of radiotracer uptake in normal and pathologic tissue and develop a clinical imaging strategy for initial staging and restaging.

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