In Vivo Quantitative Whole-Body Perfusion Imaging Using Radiolabeled Copper(II) Bis(Thiosemicarbazone) Complexes and Positron Emission Tomography (PET)

Methods Mol Biol. 2022:2393:751-771. doi: 10.1007/978-1-0716-1803-5_40.


Traditional quantitative perfusion imaging methods require complex data acquisition and analysis strategies; typically require ancillary arterial blood sampling for measurement of input functions; are limited to single organ or tissue regions in an imaging session; and because of their complexity, are not well suited for routine clinical implementation in a standardized fashion that can be readily repeated across diverse clinical sites. The whole-body perfusion method described in this chapter has the advantages of on-demand radiotracer production; simple tissue pharmacokinetics enabling standardized estimation of perfusion; short-lived radionuclides, facilitating repeat or combination imaging procedures; and scalability to support widespread clinical implementation. This method leverages the unique physiological characteristics of radiolabeled copper(II) bis(thiosemicarbazone) complexes and the detection sensitivity of positron emission tomography (PET) to produce quantitatively accurate whole-body perfusion images. This chapter describes the synthesis of ethylglyoxal bis(thosemicarbazonato)copper(II) labeled with copper-62 ([62Cu]Cu-ETS), its unique physiological characteristics, a simple tracer kinetic model for estimation of perfusion using image-derived input functions, and validation of the method against a reference standard perfusion tracer. A detailed description of the methods is provided to facilitate implementation of the perfusion imaging method in PET imaging facilities.

Keywords: Perfusion estimation; Positron emission tomography; Quantitative perfusion imaging; Tracer kinetic modeling; Whole-body imaging; [62Cu]Cu-ETS.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Copper
  • Perfusion
  • Perfusion Imaging
  • Positron-Emission Tomography*
  • Thiosemicarbazones


  • Thiosemicarbazones
  • Copper