The vanadyl chelate bis(acetylacetonato)oxovanadium(IV) increases the fractional uptake of 2-(fluorine-18)-2-deoxy-D-glucose by cultured human breast carcinoma cells

Dalton Trans. 2013 Sep 7;42(33):11862-7. doi: 10.1039/c3dt50549a.


Detection of breast cancer by positron emission tomography (PET) imaging with 2-(fluorine-18)-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) as the tracer molecule is limited in part by both tumor dimension and metabolic activity. While some types of aggressive breast cancers are associated with a high capacity for FDG uptake, more indolent breast cancers are characterized by low FDG uptake. Moreover, detection of malignant lesions in most clinical settings requires tumor dimensions ≥10 mm. Development of a method to increase the fractional uptake of FDG by cancer tissue would provide a means to detect smaller tumors. However, there is no clinically available pharmacologic reagent known to enhance the preferential uptake of FDG by cancer tissue. Because the vanadyl (VO(2+)) chelate bis(acetylacetonato)oxovanadium(IV) [VO(acac)2] is known to enhance cellular uptake of glucose, we have investigated whether VO(acac)2 facilitates enhanced uptake of FDG by cultured human breast carcinoma cells. We observed that the fractional uptake of FDG by cultured human MDA-MB-231 carcinoma cells is increased in the presence of VO(acac)2 in a dose dependent manner. Preliminary results with xenograft tumors generated in severely compromised, immunodeficient (SCID) female mice showed that VO(acac)2 treatment of mice 3-4 h prior to FDG injection enhanced FDG uptake by the malignant tissue by a factor >2.0 compared with that by normal surrounding tissue.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Chelating Agents* / chemistry
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Female
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18 / pharmacokinetics*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Mice, SCID
  • Organometallic Compounds* / chemistry
  • Positron-Emission Tomography
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Chelating Agents
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • bis(acetylacetonato)oxovanadium(IV)
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18