Comparative in Vitro and in Vivo Evaluation of Two 64Cu-labeled Bombesin Analogs in a Mouse Model of Human Prostate Adenocarcinoma

Nucl Med Biol. 2006 Apr;33(3):371-80. doi: 10.1016/j.nucmedbio.2005.12.011. Epub 2006 Mar 9.


Bombesin (BBN), an analog of human gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP), binds to the GRP receptor (GRPR) with high affinity and specificity. Overexpression of GRPR has been discovered in mostly androgen-independent human prostate tissues and, thus, provides a potential target for prostate cancer diagnosis and therapy. We have previously demonstrated the feasibility of the positron emission tomography (PET) imaging using 64Cu-1,4,7,10-tetraazadodecane-N,N',N'',N'''-tetraacetic acid (DOTA)-[Lys3]BBN to detect GRPR-positive prostate cancer. In this study, we compared the receptor affinity, metabolic stability, tumor-targeting efficacy, and pharmacokinetics of a truncated BBN analog 64Cu-DOTA-Aca-BBN(7-14) with 64Cu-DOTA-[Lys3]BBN. Binding of each DOTA conjugate to GRPR on PC-3 and 22Rv1 prostate cancer cells was evaluated with competitive binding assay using 125I-[Tyr4]BBN as radioligand. In vivo pharmacokinetics was determined on male nude mice subcutaneously implanted with PC-3 cells. Dynamic microPET imaging was performed to evaluate the systemic distribution of the tracers. Metabolic stability of the tracers in blood, urine, tumor, liver and kidney was studied using high-performance liquid chromatography. The results showed that 125I-[Tyr4]BBN has a K(d) of 14.8+/-0.4 nM against PC-3 cells, and the receptor concentration on PC-3 cell surface is approximately 2.7+/-0.1 x 10(6) receptors per cell. The 50% inhibitory concentration value for DOTA-Aca-BBN(7-14) is 18.4 +/- 0.2 nM, and that for DOTA-[Lys3]BBN is 2.2 +/- 0.5 nM. DOTA-[Lys3]BBN shows a better tumor contrast and absolute tumor activity accumulation compared to DOTA-Aca-BBN(7-14). Studies on metabolic stability for both tracers on organ homogenates showed that 64Cu-DOTA-[Lys3]BBN is relatively stable. This study demonstrated that both tracers are suitable for targeted PET imaging to detect the expression of GRPR in prostate cancer, while 64Cu-DOTA-[Lys3]BBN may have a better potential for clinical translation.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / diagnostic imaging
  • Adenocarcinoma / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Binding, Competitive
  • Bombesin* / analogs & derivatives
  • Copper Radioisotopes*
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Nude
  • Positron-Emission Tomography
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Receptors, Bombesin / metabolism
  • Tissue Distribution


  • Copper Radioisotopes
  • Receptors, Bombesin
  • Bombesin