Pre-treatment 68 Ga-PSMA-11 PET/CT Prognostic Value in Predicting Response to 177Lu-PSMA-I&T Therapy and Patient Survival

Mol Imaging Biol. 2024 Apr;26(2):360-369. doi: 10.1007/s11307-024-01900-6. Epub 2024 Feb 15.


Purpose: To assess the prognostic value of pre-treatment [68Ga]Ga-PSMA-11 PET/CT and other baseline clinical characteristics in predicting prostate cancer (PCa) patients response to [177Lu]Lu-PSMA (PSMA-I&T), as well as patient survival.

Procedures: In this retrospective study, 81 patients who received [177Lu]Lu-PSMA-I&T between October 2018 and January 2023 were reviewed. Eligible patients had metastatic castration-resistant PCa, underwent pre-treatment [68Ga]Ga-PSMA-11 PET/CT, and had serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels available. On PET/CT images, SUVmax, SULmax, SUVpeak, and SULpeak of the most-avid tumoral lesion, as well as SUVmean of the parotid gland (P-SUVmean) and liver (L-SUVmean), were measured. Also, whole-body PSMA tumour volume (PSMA-TV) and total lesion PSMA (TL-PSMA) were calculated. To interpret treatment response after [177Lu]Lu-PSMA-I&T, a composite of PSA values and [68Ga]Ga-PSMA-11 PET/CT findings were considered. The outcomes were dichotomised into progressive versus controlled (stable disease or partial response) disease. Then, the association of baseline parameters with patient response was evaluated. Also, survival analyses were performed to assess baseline parameters in predicting overall survival.

Results: Sixty patients (age:73 ± 8, PSA:185 ± 371) were included. Patients received at least one cycle of [177Lu]Lu-PSMA therapy (median = 4). Overall, half of the patients showed disease progression. In the progressive versus controlled disease evaluation, the highest SULmax, as well as SUVmax and SULmax to both backgrounds (L-SUVmean and P-SUVmean), were significantly correlated with the outcome (p-values < 0.05). In the multivariate analysis, only SULmax to the L-SUVmean remained significant (p-value = 0.038). The best cut-off was 8 (AUC = 0.71). With a median follow-up of 360 days, 11 mortal events were documented. In the multivariate survival analysis, only SULmax to P-SUVmean (cut-off = 2.4; p-value = 0.043) retained significance (hazard ratio = 4.0).

Conclusions: A greater level of PSMA uptake, specifically higher tumour-to-background uptake in the hottest lesion, may hold substantial prognostic significance, considering both [177Lu]Lu-PSMA-I&T response and patient survival. These ratios may have the potential to be used for PCa patient selection for radioligand therapy.

Keywords: Lutetium; PSMA; Positron emission tomography; Prostate cancer; Radioligand therapy; Theranostics.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Dipeptides / therapeutic use
  • Gallium Radioisotopes
  • Heterocyclic Compounds, 1-Ring
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Positron Emission Tomography Computed Tomography* / methods
  • Prognosis
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen
  • Prostatic Neoplasms, Castration-Resistant* / pathology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome


  • PSMA-11
  • Gallium Radioisotopes
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen
  • Heterocyclic Compounds, 1-Ring
  • Dipeptides