123I-(rho-iodophenyl)-3-R,S-methylpentadecanoic acid (BMIPP) is a fatty acid analog for SPECT imaging. This radiopharmaceutical possesses the unique property, that is, perfusion-metabolism mismatch on SPECT images in patients with ischemic heart disease. However, the reason of this mechanism remains unclear.
Methods: Using open-chest dogs under anesthesia, we made a system to release all the blood of the great cardiac vein outside without recirculation, if necessary. Left anterior descending artery (LAD) was occluded for 30 min after reperfusion. After the injection of BMIPP into LAD, blood samplings from the cardiac vein and abdominal aorta (6 dogs) or serial biopsy specimens from the LAD region (5 dogs) were performed, and then compared with the normal control. The catabolites of BMIPP, including backdiffusion of nonmetabolized BMIPP, were evaluated with high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) in the efflux study. Thin-layer chromatography (TLC) technique was introduced in the tissue analytical study.
Results: Although the rapid extraction of BMIPP from the plasma into the myocardium and the subsequent retention were unchanged, the early washout (8 min) of radioactivity significantly increased (51% +/- 12% to 65% +/- 7%; P < 0.05) with ischemia. The metabolites from the myocardium consisted of backdiffusion of nonmetabolized BMIPP, alpha, intermediate, and full oxidation metabolites. Among these metabolites, backdiffusion of nonmetabolized BMIPP in blood significantly increased (27.9% +/- 7.7% to 42.3% +/- 8.1%; P < 0.05), especially in the early phase with ischemia. In tissue, the radioactivity was concentrated in the triglyceride pool even in the early phase, and in addition, BMIPP and alpha-oxidized metabolite significantly decreased in the early phase with ischemia (t = 1 min after BMIPP injection, 25.9% +/- 8.6% to 14.5% +/- 2.1%, P < 0.01; t = 2 min, 8.9% +/- 5.0% to 4.5% +/- 1.7%, P < 0.05).
Conclusion: These results show that backdiffusion of nonmetabolized BMIPP from the myocardium increased and BMIPP (long-chain fatty acids) in tissue decreased with ischemia, suggesting backdiffusion of nonmetabolized BMIPP might play an important role in myocardial perfusion-metabolism mismatch on SPECT images in patients with ischemic heart disease.