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      Positron Emission Tomography (PET) radiotracers in oncology – utility of 18F-Fluoro-deoxy-glucose (FDG)-PET in the management of patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC)

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          PET (Positron Emission Tomography) is a nuclear medicine imaging method, frequently used in oncology during the last years. It is a non-invasive technique that provides quantitative in vivo assessment of physiological and biological phenomena. PET has found its application in common practice for the management of various cancers.

          Lung cancer is the most common cause of death for cancer in western countries.

          This review focuses on radiotracers used for PET scan with particular attention to Non Small Cell Lung Cancer diagnosis, staging, response to treatment and follow-up

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          Most cited references 104

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          Measurement of clinical and subclinical tumour response using [18F]-fluorodeoxyglucose and positron emission tomography: review and 1999 EORTC recommendations. European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) PET Study Group.

          [18F]-fluorodeoxyglucose ([18F]-FDG) uptake is enhanced in most malignant tumours which in turn can be measured using positron emission tomography (PET). A number of small clinical trials have indicated that quantification of the change in tumour [18F]-FDG uptake may provide an early, sensitive, pharmacodynamic marker of the tumoricidal effect of anticancer drugs. This may allow for the introduction of subclinical response for anticancer drug evaluation in early clinical trials and improvements in patient management. For comparison of results from smaller clinical trials and larger-scale multicentre trials a consensus is desirable for: (i) common measurement criteria; and (ii) reporting of alterations in [18F]-FDG uptake with treatment. This paper summarises the current status of the technique and recommendations on the measurement of [18F]-FDG uptake for tumour response monitoring from a consensus meeting of the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) PET study group held in Brussels in February 1998 and confirmed at a subsequent meeting in March 1999.
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            Preoperative staging of non-small-cell lung cancer with positron-emission tomography.

            Determining the stage of non-small-cell lung cancer often requires multiple preoperative tests and invasive procedures. Whole-body positron-emission tomography (PET) may simplify and improve the evaluation of patients with this tumor. We prospectively compared the ability of a standard approach to staging (computed tomography [CT], ultrasonography, bone scanning, and, when indicated, needle biopsies) and one involving PET to detect metastases in mediastinal lymph nodes and at distant sites in 102 patients with resectable non-small-cell lung cancer. The presence of mediastinal metastatic disease was confirmed histopathologically. Distant metastases that were detected by PET were further evaluated by standard imaging tests and biopsies. Patients were followed postoperatively for six months by standard methods to detect occult metastases. Logistic-regression analysis was used to evaluate the ability of PET and CT to identify malignant mediastinal lymph nodes. The sensitivity and specificity of PET for the detection of mediastinal metastases were 91 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 81 to 100 percent) and 86 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 78 to 94 percent), respectively. The corresponding values for CT were 75 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 60 to 90 percent) and 66 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 55 to 77 percent). When the results of PET and CT were adjusted for each other, only PET results were positively correlated with the histopathological findings in mediastinal lymph nodes (P<0.001). PET identified distant metastases that had not been found by standard methods in 11 of 102 patients. The sensitivity and specificity of PET for the detection of both mediastinal and distant metastatic disease were 95 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 88 to 100 percent) and 83 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 74 to 92 percent), respectively. The use of PET to identify the stage of the disease resulted in a different stage from the one determined by standard methods in 62 patients: the stage was lowered in 20 and raised in 42. PET improves the rate of detection of local and distant metastases in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer.
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              Procedure guideline for tumor imaging with 18F-FDG PET/CT 1.0.


                Author and article information

                J Exp Clin Cancer Res
                Journal of Experimental & Clinical Cancer Research : CR
                BioMed Central
                17 October 2008
                : 27
                : 1
                : 52
                [1 ]Department of Experimental Medicine University of Rome "Sapienza" viale Regina Elena 324, Rome, Italy
                [2 ]Operative Unit of Medical Oncology, S. Maria Goretti Hospital, University of Rome "Sapienza" – Latina-via Canova, Latina, Italy
                [3 ]Gastroenterology and Digestive Endoscopy, "Nuovo Regina Margherita" Hospital, Rome 00153, Italy
                [4 ]Thoracic Oncology Unit I, Department of Lung Diseases, San Camillo and Forlanini Hospitals, Rome, Italy
                Copyright © 2008 Miele et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


                Oncology & Radiotherapy


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