Send to

Choose Destination
J Nucl Med. 2011 Dec;52(12):1864-70. doi: 10.2967/jnumed.111.091165. Epub 2011 Nov 9.

68Ga-DOTATOC versus 68Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT in functional imaging of neuroendocrine tumors.

Author information

Department of Nuclear Medicine, University Essen, Essen, Germany.


Radiolabeled somatostatin analogs represent valuable tools for both in vivo diagnosis and therapy of neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) because of the frequent tumoral overexpression of somatostatin receptors (sst). The 2 compounds most often used in functional imaging with PET are (68)Ga-DOTATATE and (68)Ga-DOTATOC. Both ligands share a quite similar sst binding profile. However, the in vitro affinity of (68)Ga-DOTATATE in binding the sst subtype 2 (sst2) is approximately 10-fold higher than that of (68)Ga-DOTATOC. This difference may affect their efficiency in the detection of NET lesions because it is the sst2 that is predominantly overexpressed in NET. We thus compared the diagnostic value of PET/CT with both radiolabeled somatostatin analogs ((68)Ga-DOTATATE and (68)Ga-DOTATOC) in the same NET patients.


Forty patients with metastatic NETs underwent (68)Ga-DOTATOC and (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT as part of the work-up before prospective peptide receptor radionuclide therapy. The performance of both imaging methods was analyzed and compared for the detection of individual lesions per patient and for 8 defined body regions. A region was regarded positive if at least 1 lesion was detected in that region. In addition, radiopeptide uptake in terms of the maximal standardized uptake value (SUVmax) was compared for concordant lesions and renal parenchyma.


Seventy-eight regions were found positive with (68)Ga-DOTATATE versus 79 regions with (68)Ga-DOTATOC (not significant). Overall, however, significantly fewer lesions were detected with (68)Ga-DOTATATE than with (68)Ga-DOTATOC (254 vs. 262, P < 0.05). Mean (68)Ga-DOTATATE SUVmax across all lesions was significantly lower than (68)Ga-DOTATOC (16.0 ± 10.8 vs. 20.4 ± 14.7, P < 0.01). Mean SUVmax for renal parenchyma was not significantly different between (68)Ga-DOTATATE and (68)Ga-DOTATOC (12.7 ± 3.0 vs. 13.2 ± 3.3).


(68)Ga-DOTATOC and (68)Ga-DOTATATE possess a comparable diagnostic accuracy for the detection of NET lesions, with (68)Ga-DOTATOC having a potential advantage. The approximately 10-fold higher affinity for the sst2 of (68)Ga-DOTATATE does not prove to be clinically relevant. Quite unexpectedly, SUVmax of (68)Ga-DOTATOC scans tended to be higher than their (68)Ga-DOTATATE counterparts.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center