Microglial activation is a key pathological feature of Alzheimer's disease (AD). PET imaging of translocator protein 18 kDa (TSPO) is a strategy to detect microglial activation in vivo. Here we assessed flutriciclamide ([18F]GE-180), a new second-generation TSPO-PET radiotracer, for its ability to monitor response to LM11A-31, a novel AD therapeutic in clinical trials. AD mice displaying pathology were treated orally with LM11A-31 for 3 months. Subsequent [18F]GE-180-PET imaging revealed significantly lower signal in cortex and hippocampus of LM11A-31-treated AD mice compared to those treated with vehicle, corresponding with decreased levels of TSPO immunostaining and microglial Iba1 immunostaining. In addition to detecting decreased microglial activation following LM11A-31 treatment, [18F]GE-180 identified activated microglia in AD mice with greater sensitivity than another second-generation TSPO radiotracer, [18F]PBR06. Together, these data demonstrate the promise of [18F]GE-180 as a potentially sensitive tool for tracking neuroinflammation in AD mice and for monitoring therapeutic modulation of microglial activation.
Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; LM11A-31.; PET; TSPO; [18F]GE-180; flutriciclamide; neuroinflammation.