A simple method for stem cell labeling with fluorine 18

Nucl Med Biol. 2005 Oct;32(7):701-5. doi: 10.1016/j.nucmedbio.2005.04.018.


Hexadecyl-4-[(18)F]fluorobenzoate ([(18)F]HFB), a long chain fluorinated benzoic acid ester, was prepared in a one-step synthesis by aromatic nucleophilic substitution of [(18)F]fluoride ion on hexadecyl-4-(N,N,N-trimethylammonio)benzoate. The radiolabeled ester was obtained in good yields (52% decay corrected) and high purity (97%). [(18)F]HFB was used to radiolabel rat mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) by absorption into cell membranes. MicroPET imaging of [(18)F]HFB-labeled MSCs following intravenous injection into the rat showed the expected high and persistent accumulation of radioactivity in the lungs. [(18)F]HFB is thus simple to prepare and uses labeling agent for short-term distribution studies of injected stem cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Count / methods*
  • Cell Separation / methods*
  • Fluorine Radioisotopes / pharmacokinetics*
  • Lung / cytology
  • Lung / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lung / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cell Transplantation / methods
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / diagnostic imaging*
  • Mesenchymal Stem Cells / metabolism*
  • Positron-Emission Tomography / methods*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred F344


  • Fluorine Radioisotopes