Radionuclide imaging of bone marrow disorders

Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging. 2011 Jan;38(1):166-78. doi: 10.1007/s00259-010-1531-0. Epub 2010 Jul 13.


Noninvasive imaging techniques have been used in the past for visualization the functional activity of the bone marrow compartment. Imaging with radiolabelled compounds may allow different bone marrow disorders to be distinguished. These imaging techniques, almost all of which use radionuclide-labelled tracers, such as (99m)Tc-nanocolloid, (99m)Tc-sulphur colloid, (111)In-chloride, and radiolabelled white blood cells, have been used in nuclear medicine for several decades. With these techniques three separate compartments can be recognized including the reticuloendothelial system, the erythroid compartment and the myeloid compartment. Recent developments in research and the clinical use of PET tracers have made possible the analysis of additional properties such as cellular metabolism and proliferative activity, using (18)F-FDG and (18)F-FLT. These tracers may lead to better quantification and targeting of different cell systems in the bone marrow. In this review the imaging of different bone marrow targets with radionuclides including PET tracers in various bone marrow diseases are discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone Marrow Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Bone Marrow Diseases / metabolism
  • Bone Marrow Diseases / pathology
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Humans
  • Radionuclide Imaging / methods*