Systemic targeted radionuclide therapy: potential new areas

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2006;66(2 Suppl):S74-82. doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2005.05.029.


Radiation oncology is entering an exciting new era with therapies being delivered in a targeted fashion through an increasing number of novel approaches. External beam radiotherapy now integrates functional and anatomic tumor imaging to guide delivery of conformal radiation to the tumor target. Systemic targeted radionuclide therapy (STaRT) adds an important new dimension by making available to the radiation oncologist biologically targeted radiation therapy. Impressive clinical results with antibody-targeted radiotherapy, leading to the Food and Drug Administration's approval of two anti-CD20 radiolabeled antibodies, highlight the potential of STaRT. Optimization strategies will further improve the efficacy of STaRT by improving delivery systems, modifying the tumor microenvironment to increase targeted dose, and maximizing dose effect. Ultimately, the greatest potential for STaRT will not be as monotherapy, but as therapy integrated into established multimodality regimens and used as adjuvant or consolidative therapy in patients with minimal or micrometastatic disease.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Bispecific / therapeutic use
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use
  • Combined Modality Therapy / methods
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Radiation Oncology / trends
  • Radioimmunotherapy / methods*
  • Radioisotopes / therapeutic use
  • Radiotherapy Dosage


  • Antibodies, Bispecific
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Radioisotopes