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Contrast Media Mol Imaging. 2018 Nov 1;2018:3727109. doi: 10.1155/2018/3727109. eCollection 2018.

Image-Guided Neutron Capture Therapy Using the Gd-DO3A-BTA Complex as a New Combinatorial Treatment Approach.

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Division of Applied RI, Korea Institute of Radiological and Medical Science, Seoul 139-706, Republic of Korea.
BK21 Plus KNU Biomedical Convergence Program, School of Medicine, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 700-721, Republic of Korea.
College of Veterinary Medicine, Konkuk University, Seoul 05029, Republic of Korea.
Department of Molecular Medicine, School of Medicine, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 700-721, Republic of Korea.
Department of Radiology, Kyungpook National University Hospital, Daegu 700-721, Republic of Korea.


Gadolinium-neutron capture therapy (Gd-NCT) is based on the nuclear capture reaction that occurs when 157Gd is irradiated with low energy thermal neutrons to primarily produce gamma photons. Herein, we investigated the effect of neutron capture therapy (NCT) using a small molecular gadolinium complex, Gd-DO3A-benzothiazole (Gd-DO3A-BTA), which could be a good candidate for use as an NCT drug due to its ability to enter the intracellular nuclei of tumor cells. Furthermore, MRI images of Gd-DO3A-BTA showed a clear signal enhancement in the tumor, and the images also played a key role in planning NCT by providing accurate information on the in vivo uptake time and duration of Gd-DO3A-BTA. We injected Gd-DO3A-BTA into MDA-MB-231 breast tumor-bearing mice and irradiated the tumors with cyclotron neutrons at the maximum accumulation time (postinjection 6 h); then, we observed the size of the growing tumor for 60 days. Gd-DO3A-BTA showed good therapeutic effects of chemo-Gd-NCT for the in vivo tumor models. Simultaneously, the Gd-DO3A-BTA groups ([Gd-DO3A-BTA(+), NCT(+)]) showed a significant reduction in tumor size (p < 0.05), and the inhibitory effect on tumor growth was exhibited in the following order: [Gd-DO3A-BTA(+), NCT(+)] > [Gd-DO3A-BTA(+), NCT(-)] > [Gd-DO3A-BTA(-), NCT(+)] > [Gd-DO3A-BTA(-), NCT(-)]. On day 60, the [Gd-DO3A-BTA(+), NCT(+)] and [Gd-DO3A-BTA(-), NCT(-)] groups exhibited an approximately 4.5-fold difference in tumor size. Immunohistochemistry studies demonstrated that new combinational therapy with chemo-Gd-NCT could treat breast cancer by both the inhibition of tumor cell proliferation and induction of apoptosis-related proteins, with in vivo tumor monitoring by MRI.

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