Purpose: The aim was to assess changes in insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF-1R) expression with immunoSPECT/CT and to study the dynamics of IGF-1R expression of human breast tumors during endocrine treatment.
Procedures: Mice with MCF-7 xenografts were treated with estradiol or tamoxifen, and IGF-1R expression was measured by immunohistochemistry and immunoSPECT/CT using (111)In-R1507 (anti-IGF-1R antibody). Moreover, IGF-1R expression was analyzed immunohistochemically on 22 human breast tumors, treated preoperatively with endocrine therapy.
Results: Estradiol resulted in an increased expression of IGF-1R, as measured by immunohistochemistry and immunoSPECT/CT. In contrast, tamoxifen resulted in a downregulation of IGF-1R, whereas this could not be measured with immunoSPECT/CT. A downregulation was also detectable in 9 out of 22 (41 %) human breast tumors after endocrine therapy.
Conclusions: Anti-estrogen treatment can cause a reduction in membranous IGF-1R expression. Based on these results, a combination of anti-IGF-1R antibodies with anti-estrogen therapy might not be a rational treatment strategy.