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Visualization Of Prostate Cancer With 11C-choline Positron Emission Tomography.

I. D. de Jong, J. Pruim, P. Elsinga, W. Vaalburg, H. Mensink
Published 2002 · Medicine

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BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE Visualization of prostate cancer with positron emission tomography (PET) using 2-[18F]-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) as radiopharmaceutical is limited by the low uptake of FDG in the tumor and by radioactivity excreted into the bladder. More specific PET radiopharmaceuticals would be welcome. Carbon-11 labeled choline (CHOL) is a new radiopharmaceutical potentially useful for tumor imaging as it is incorporated in the cell membranes as phosphatidylcholine. We prospectively studied the visualization of prostate cancer using CHOL PET. METHODS A total of 25 consecutive patients with histologically proven prostate cancer and five patients with a benign prostate were included. PET images were performed with an ECAT HR(+) using 400MBq CHOL. Data acquisition was started at 5 minutes post-injection. Attenuation-corrected images were evaluated visually. Standardized uptake values (SUV) were calculated of the normal prostate gland and of the prostate tumor tissue. RESULTS The normal prostate was visualized with a mean SUV of 2.3 (range 1.3-3.2). The primary tumor could be visualized with a mean SUV of 5.0 (range 2.4-9.5). Lymph node metastases >5mm could be identified. Non-specific uptake of CHOL was noticed in the intestines. Little to no radioactivity in the bladder was observed. CONCLUSION Carbon-11-choline is avidly taken up in prostate cancer, both primary tumor and lymph node metastases, in the virtual absence of urinary radioactivity. These results confirm the early results obtained by others and permit further clinical research on the value of CHOL PET as a metabolic imaging technique in areas where conventional imaging have a limited sensitivity.
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