First ex vivo validation of a radioguided surgery technique with β-radiation

Phys Med. 2016 Sep;32(9):1139-44. doi: 10.1016/j.ejmp.2016.08.018. Epub 2016 Sep 2.


Purpose: A radio-guided surgery technique with β(-)-emitting radio-tracers was suggested to overcome the effect of the large penetration of γ radiation. The feasibility studies in the case of brain tumors and abdominal neuro-endocrine tumors were based on simulations starting from PET images with several underlying assumptions. This paper reports, as proof-of-principle of this technique, an ex vivo test on a meningioma patient. This test allowed to validate the whole chain, from the evaluation of the SUV of the tumor, to the assumptions on the bio-distribution and the signal detection.

Methods: A patient affected by meningioma was administered 300MBq of (90)Y-DOTATOC. Several samples extracted from the meningioma and the nearby Dura Mater were analyzed with a β(-) probe designed specifically for this radio-guided surgery technique. The observed signals were compared both with the evaluation from the histology and with the Monte Carlo simulation.

Results: we obtained a large signal on the bulk tumor (105cps) and a significant signal on residuals of ∼0.2ml (28cps). We also show that simulations predict correctly the observed yields and this allows us to estimate that the healthy tissues would return negligible signals (≈1cps). This test also demonstrated that the exposure of the medical staff is negligible and that among the biological wastes only urine has a significant activity.

Conclusions: This proof-of-principle test on a patient assessed that the technique is feasible with negligible background to medical personnel and confirmed that the expectations obtained with Monte Carlo simulations starting from diagnostic PET images are correct.

Keywords: Brain tumors; Intraoperative imaging; Radio-guided-surgery; decays.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Algorithms
  • Beta Particles
  • Brain Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Meningioma / diagnostic imaging
  • Meningioma / radiotherapy*
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Monte Carlo Method
  • Occupational Exposure / prevention & control
  • Octreotide / analogs & derivatives
  • Octreotide / chemistry
  • Positron-Emission Tomography*
  • Radiometry
  • Radiosurgery / methods*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surgery, Computer-Assisted / methods*


  • 90Y-octreotide, DOTA-Tyr(3)-
  • Octreotide