Radiolabeled somatostatin analogs are important tools for the in vivo localization and targeted radionuclide therapy of somatostatin receptor-positive tumors. The aim of this study was to compare 3 somatostatin analogs designed for the labeling with (99m)Tc (where HYNIC is 6-hydrazinopyridine-3-carboxylic acid): 6-hydrazinopyridine-3-carboxylic acid(0)-octreotide (HYNIC-OC/(99m)Tc-(1)), [HYNIC(0),Tyr(3)]octreotide (HYNIC-TOC/(99m)Tc-(2)), and [HYNIC(0),Tyr(3),Thr(8)]octreotide (HYNIC-TATE/(99m)Tc-(3)), using ethylenediamine-N,N'-diacetic acid (EDDA) as a coligand. In addition, we compared the (99m)Tc-labeled peptides [(111)In-diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid(0)]octreotide ([(111)In-DTPA]-OC) and [(111)In-1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-1,4,7,10-tetraacetic acid(0),Tyr(3),Thr(8)]octreotide ([(111)In-DOTA]-TATE) with regard to the rate of internalization and the biodistribution in AR4-2J (expressing the somatostatin receptor subtype 2) tumor-bearing rats. The main attention was directed toward a potential correlation between the rate of internalization and the tumor or pancreas uptake.
Methods: Synthesis was performed on solid phase using a standard Fmoc strategy. Internalization was studied in cell culture (AR4-2J) and biodistribution was studied using a Lewis rat tumor model (AR4-2J).
Results: The 5 radiopeptides showed a specific internalization into AR4-2J cells in culture (as shown by blocking experiments). The rate of internalization of the 5 radiopeptides differed significantly according to the following order: (99m)Tc-(1) approximately = [(111)In-DTPA]-OC < (99m)Tc-(2) < (99m)Tc-(3) approximately = [(111)In-DOTA]-TATE. All radiopeptides displayed a rapid blood clearance and a fast clearance from all somatostatin receptor-negative tissues predominantly via the kidneys. A receptor-specific uptake of radioactivity was observed for all compounds in somatostatin receptor-positive organs such as the pancreas, the adrenals, and the stomach. After 4 h, the uptake in the AR4-2J tumor was comparable for (99m)Tc-(2) (3.85 +/- 1.0 injected dose per gram tissue (%ID/g)), (99m)Tc-(3) (3.99 +/- 0.58%ID/g), and [(111)In-DOTA]-TATE (4.12 +/- 0.74%ID/g) but much lower for [(111)In-DTPA]-OC (0.99 +/- 0.08%ID/g) and (99m)Tc-(1) (0.70 +/- 0.13%ID/g). The specificity was determined by blocking experiments using a large excess of [Tyr(3)]octreotide. (99m)Tc-(3) displayed the highest tumor-to-kidney ratio (2.5:1), followed by (99m)Tc(2) (1.9:1) and [(111)In-DOTA]-TATE (1.7:1).
Conclusion: These data show that the 5 radiopeptides are specific radioligands for the somatostatin receptor subtype 2. The rate of internalization correlates with the uptake in the tumor (R(2) = 0.75; P = 0.026) and pancreas (R(2) = 0.98; P = 7.4.10(-5)). [Tyr(3),Thr(8)]octreotide derivatives show superiority over the corresponding octreotide and [Tyr(3)]octreotide derivatives, indicating that [(111)In-DOTA]-TATE and [(99m)Tc/EDDA/HYNIC]-TATE are suitable candidates for clinical studies.