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Cancer Sci. 2009 Apr;100(4):753-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1349-7006.2008.01077.x. Epub 2009 Jan 12.

Correlation of angiogenesis with 18F-FMT and 18F-FDG uptake in non-small cell lung cancer.

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Department of Medicine and Molecular Science, Gunma University Graduate School of Medicine, Showa-machi, Maebashi, Gunman 371-8511, Japan.


L-[3-18F]-alpha-methyltyrosine (18F-FMT) is an amino-acid tracer for positron-emission tomography (PET). We have conducted a clinicopathologic study to elucidate the correlation of angiogenesis with 18F-FMT and 2-[18F]-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (18F-FDG) uptake in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Thirty-seven NSCLC patients were enrolled in this study, and two PET studies with 18F-FMT and 18F-FDG were performed. Uptake of PET tracers was evaluated with standardized uptake value. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), CD31, CD34, L-type amino acid transporter 1 (LAT1) and Ki-67 labeling index of the resected tumors were analyzed by immunohistochemical staining, and correlated with the clinicopathologic variables and the uptake of PET tracers. The median VEGF rate was 45% (range, 10-78%). High expression was seen in 30 patients (81%, 30/37). VEGF expression was statistically associated with progressively growing microvessel count. VEGF showed a correlation with LAT1 expression (P = 0.04) and Ki-67 labeling index (P = 0.01). However, it showed no correlation with age, gender, disease stage, tumor size, and histology. Microvessel density (MVD) showed no correlation with any parameters. 18F-FMT and 18F-FDG uptake correlated significantly with VEGF (P < 0.0001, P = 0.026, respectively), whereas the correlation of 18F-FMT and VEGF was more meaningful. The present study demonstrated that the metabolic activity of primary tumors as evaluated by PET study with 18F-FMT and 18F-FDG is related to tumor angiogenesis and the proliferative activity in NSCLC.


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