Intra-tumoral distribution of (64)Cu-ATSM: a comparison study with FDG

Nucl Med Biol. 2003 Jul;30(5):529-34. doi: 10.1016/s0969-8051(03)00047-7.


(64)Cu-labeled diacetyl-bis(N(4)-methylthiosemicarbazone) ((64)Cu-ATSM) is a promising agent for internal radiation therapy and imaging of hypoxic tissues. In the present study, the intra-tumoral distribution of (64)Cu-ATSM was investigated by comparing it to that of [(18)F]FDG and histological findings. VX2 tumors were implanted into Japanese white rabbits subcutaneously. (64)Cu-ATSM and [(18)F]FDG were co-injected intravenously and the tumor was dissected and cut into 1 mm thick slices 1 h after the injection. The uptake of (64)Cu-ATSM and [(18)F]FDG was measured using a dual-tracer autoradiographic technique. Histological cell biology was estimated from the optical microscopy of tumor sections. The major accumulation of (64)Cu-ATSM was observed around the outer rim of the tumor masses which consisted mainly of active cells and expected to be hypoxic. [(18)F]FDG was distributed more widely with highest levels in the inner regions where pre-necrotic cells were mainly observed. (64)Cu-ATSM appears to be useful for the detection of hypoxic but active tumor cell regions in vivo.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Copper Radioisotopes / pharmacokinetics*
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18 / pharmacokinetics*
  • Liver Neoplasms, Experimental / diagnosis
  • Liver Neoplasms, Experimental / metabolism*
  • Liver Neoplasms, Experimental / pathology*
  • Male
  • Neoplasm Transplantation
  • Organometallic Compounds / pharmacokinetics*
  • Rabbits
  • Radiopharmaceuticals / pharmacokinetics
  • Thiosemicarbazones / pharmacokinetics*
  • Tissue Distribution


  • Copper Radioisotopes
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  • Thiosemicarbazones
  • copper (II) diacetyl-di(N(4)-methylthiosemicarbazone)
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18