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Nucl Med Biol. 2012 Apr;39(3):371-6. doi: 10.1016/j.nucmedbio.2011.09.003. Epub 2011 Nov 29.

Study of [18F]FLT and [123I]IaraU for cellular imaging in HSV1 tk-transfected murine fibrosarcoma cells: evaluation of the tracer uptake using 5-fluoro, 5-iodo and 5-iodovinyl arabinosyl uridines as competitive probes.

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Department of Biomedical Engineering and Environmental Sciences, National Tsing-Hua University, Hsinchu 300, Taiwan.


As one of the most intensively studied probes for imaging of the cellular proliferation, [(18)F]FLT was investigated whether the targeting specificity of thymidine kinase 1 (TK1) dependency could be enhanced through a synergistic effect mediated by herpes simplex type 1 virus (HSV1) tk gene in terms of the TK1 or TK2 expression. 5-[(123)I]Iodo arabinosyl uridine ([(123)I]IaraU) was prepared in a radiochemical yield of 8% and specific activity of 21 GBq/╬╝mol, respectively. Inhibition of the cellular uptake of these two tracers was compared by using the arabinosyl uridine analogs such as 5-iodo, 5-fluoro and 5-(E)-iodovinyl arabinosyl uridine along with 2'-fluoro-5-iodo arabinosyl uridine (FIAU). Due to potential instability of the iodo group, accumulation index of 1.6 for [(123)I]IaraU by HSV1-TK vs. control cells could virtually be achieved at 1.5 h, but dropped to 0.2 compared to 2.0 for [(18)F]FLT at 5 h. The results from competitive inhibition by these nucleosides against the accumulation of [(18)F]FLT implied that FLT exerted a mixed TK1- and TK2-dependent inhibition with HSV1-tk gene transfection because of the shifting of thymidine kinase status. Taken together, the combination of [(18)F]FLT and HSV1-TK provides a synergistic imaging potency.

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