Positron emission tomography (PET) is an imaging technique that is used to investigate ligand-receptor binding in the living brain and to determine the time course of plasma concentration/receptor occupancy (RO). The purpose of this work was to demonstrate the added value of an adaptive-optimal design for PET scan timings and dose selection over traditional study designs involving fixed or educated selections of timings and doses. A k(on)-k(off) model relating plasma concentration to PET data was applied to generate the simulated data. Optimization was performed on scanning timings and doses using the D-optimality criterion. Optimal designs as applied to scanning timings provided unbiased estimates and improved the accuracy of results relative to those of fixed and educated designs. Optimization of both timings and dose provided improvements in accuracy and precision when the initial dose selection was noninformative regarding the time course of RO. These results indicate that adaptive-optimal designs can provide an efficient experimental design for RO studies using PET, by minimizing the number of subjects required and maximizing information related to the plasma concentration-RO relationship.