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J Nucl Med. 2012 Nov;53(11):1748-54. doi: 10.2967/jnumed.112.105460. Epub 2012 Sep 17.

Immuno-PET of tissue factor in pancreatic cancer.

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Department of Radiology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, USA.


Upregulation of tissue factor (TF) expression leads to increased patient morbidity and mortality in many solid tumor types. The goal of this study was to develop a PET tracer for imaging of TF expression in pancreatic cancer.


ALT-836, a chimeric antihuman TF monoclonal antibody, was conjugated to 2-S-(4-isothiocyanatobenzyl)-1,4,7-triazacyclononane-1,4,7-triacetic acid (p-SCN-Bn-NOTA) and labeled with (64)Cu. To compare the TF binding affinity of ALT-836 and NOTA-ALT-836, flow cytometry analysis was performed in 3 pancreatic cancer cell lines with different expression levels of TF (from low to high: PANC-1, ASPC-1, and BXPC-3). PET, biodistribution, blocking, and histology studies were performed on pancreatic tumor-bearing mice to evaluate the ability and specificity of (64)Cu-NOTA-ALT-836 to target TF in vivo.


There was no difference in TF binding affinity between ALT-836 and NOTA-ALT-836. (64)Cu-labeling was achieved with high yield and specific activity. Serial PET revealed that the uptake of (64)Cu-NOTA-ALT-836 in BXPC-3 tumors (high TF expression) was 5.7 ± 1.8, 10.4 ± 0.8, and 16.5 ± 2.6 percentage injected dose per gram at 4, 24, and 48 h after injection, respectively (n = 4), significantly higher than that in the PANC-1 and ASPC-1 tumors. Biodistribution data as measured by γ-counting were consistent with the PET findings. Blocking experiments and histology further confirmed the TF specificity of (64)Cu-NOTA-ALT-836.


Herein we report the first successful PET imaging of TF expression. Persistent and TF-specific uptake of (64)Cu-NOTA-ALT-836 was observed in pancreatic cancer models.

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