This study presents the first successful use of a peptidic vector, DOTATOC, labelled with the beta-emitting radioisotope yttrium-90, for the treatment of a patient with somatostatin receptor-positive abdominal metastases of a neuroendocrine carcinoma of unknown localization. Tumour response and symptomatic relief were achieved. In addition, the new substance DOTATOC was labelled with the diagnostic chemical analogue indium-111 and studied in three patients with histopathologically verified neuroendocrine abdominal tumours for its diagnostic sensitivity and compared with the commercially available OctreoScan. In all patients the kidney-to-tumour uptake ratio (in counts per pixel) was on average 1. 9-fold lower with 111In-DOTATOC than with OctreoScan. DOTATOC could be a potential new diagnostic and therapeutic agent in the management of neuroendocrine tumours.