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      Immuno-Positron Emission Tomography with Zirconium-89-Labeled Monoclonal Antibodies in Oncology: What Can We Learn from Initial Clinical Trials?

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          Selection of the right drug for the right patient is a promising approach to increase clinical benefit of targeted therapy with monoclonal antibodies (mAbs). Assessment of in vivo biodistribution and tumor targeting of mAbs to predict toxicity and efficacy is expected to guide individualized treatment and drug development. Molecular imaging with positron emission tomography (PET) using zirconium-89 ( 89Zr)-labeled monoclonal antibodies also known as 89Zr-immuno-PET, visualizes and quantifies uptake of radiolabeled mAbs. This technique provides a potential imaging biomarker to assess target expression, as well as tumor targeting of mAbs. In this review we summarize results from initial clinical trials with 89Zr-immuno-PET in oncology and discuss technical aspects of trial design. In clinical trials with 89Zr-immuno-PET two requirements should be met for each 89Zr-labeled mAb to realize its full potential. One requirement is that the biodistribution of the 89Zr-labeled mAb (imaging dose) reflects the biodistribution of the drug during treatment (therapeutic dose). Another requirement is that tumor uptake of 89Zr-mAb on PET is primarily driven by specific, antigen-mediated, tumor targeting. Initial trials have contributed toward the development of 89Zr-immuno-PET as an imaging biomarker by showing correlation between uptake of 89Zr-labeled mAbs on PET and target expression levels in biopsies. These results indicate that 89Zr-immuno-PET reflects specific, antigen-mediated binding. 89Zr-immuno-PET was shown to predict toxicity of RIT, but thus far results indicating that toxicity of mAbs or mAb-drug conjugate treatment can be predicted are lacking. So far, one study has shown that molecular imaging combined with early response assessment is able to predict response to treatment with the antibody-drug conjugate trastuzumab-emtansine, in patients with human epithelial growth factor-2 (HER2)-positive breast cancer. Future studies would benefit from a standardized criterion to define positive tumor uptake, possibly supported by quantitative analysis, and validated by linking imaging data with corresponding clinical outcome. Taken together, these results encourage further studies to develop 89Zr-immuno-PET as a predictive imaging biomarker to guide individualized treatment, as well as for potential application in drug development.

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          Cetuximab plus irinotecan, fluorouracil, and leucovorin as first-line treatment for metastatic colorectal cancer: updated analysis of overall survival according to tumor KRAS and BRAF mutation status.

          The addition of cetuximab to irinotecan, fluorouracil, and leucovorin (FOLFIRI) as first-line treatment for metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) was shown to reduce the risk of disease progression and increase the chance of response in patients with KRAS wild-type disease. An updated survival analysis, including additional patients analyzed for tumor mutation status, was undertaken. Patients were randomly assigned to receive FOLFIRI with or without cetuximab. DNA was extracted from additional slide-mounted tumor samples previously used to assess epidermal growth factor receptor expression. Clinical outcome according to the tumor mutation status of KRAS and BRAF was assessed in the expanded patient series. The ascertainment rate of patients analyzed for tumor KRAS status was increased from 45% to 89%, with mutations detected in 37% of tumors. The addition of cetuximab to FOLFIRI in patients with KRAS wild-type disease resulted in significant improvements in overall survival (median, 23.5 v 20.0 months; hazard ratio [HR], 0.796; P = .0093), progression-free survival (median, 9.9 v 8.4 months; HR, 0.696; P = .0012), and response (rate 57.3% v 39.7%; odds ratio, 2.069; P < .001) compared with FOLFIRI alone. Significant interactions between KRAS status and treatment effect were noted for all key efficacy end points. KRAS mutation status was confirmed as a powerful predictive biomarker for the efficacy of cetuximab plus FOLFIRI. BRAF tumor mutation was a strong indicator of poor prognosis. The addition of cetuximab to FOLFIRI as first-line therapy improves survival in patients with KRAS wild-type mCRC. BRAF tumor mutation is an indicator of poor prognosis.
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            Long-term results of the R-CHOP study in the treatment of elderly patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma: a study by the Groupe d'Etude des Lymphomes de l'Adulte.

            To analyze the long-term outcome of patients included in the Lymphome Non Hodgkinien study 98-5 (LNH98-5) comparing cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone (CHOP) to rituximab plus CHOP (R-CHOP) in elderly patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. LNH98-5 was a randomized study that included 399 previously untreated patients, age 60 to 80 years, with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. Patients received eight cycles of classical CHOP (cyclophosphamide 750 mg/m(2), doxorubicin 50 mg/m(2), vincristine 1.4 mg/m(2), and prednisone 40 mg/m(2) for 5 days) every 3 weeks. In R-CHOP, rituximab 375 mg/m(2) was administered the same day as CHOP. Survivals were analyzed using the intent-to-treat principle. Median follow-up is 5 years at present. Event-free survival, progression-free survival, disease-free survival, and overall survival remain statistically significant in favor of the combination of R-CHOP (P = .00002, P < .00001, P < .00031, and P < .0073, respectively, in the log-rank test). Patients with low-risk or high-risk lymphoma according to the age-adjusted International Prognostic Index have longer survivals if treated with the combination. No long-term toxicity appeared to be associated with the R-CHOP combination. Using the combination of R-CHOP leads to significant improvement of the outcome of elderly patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, with significant survival benefit maintained during a 5-year follow-up. This combination should become the standard for treating these patients.
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              Biodistribution of 89Zr-trastuzumab and PET imaging of HER2-positive lesions in patients with metastatic breast cancer.

              We performed a feasibility study to determine the optimal dosage and time of administration of the monoclonal antibody zirconium-89 ((89)Zr)-trastuzumab to enable positron emission tomography (PET) imaging of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive lesions. Fourteen patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer received 37 MBq of (89)Zr-trastuzumab at one of three doses (10 or 50 mg for those who were trastuzumab-naive and 10 mg for those who were already on trastuzumab treatment). The patients underwent at least two PET scans between days 2 and 5. The results of the study showed that the best time for assessment of (89)Zr-trastuzumab uptake by tumors was 4-5 days after the injection. For optimal PET-scan results, trastuzumab-naive patients required a 50 mg dose of (89)Zr-trastuzumab, and patients already on trastuzumab treatment required a 10 mg dose. The accumulation of (89)Zr-trastuzumab in lesions allowed PET imaging of most of the known lesions and some that had been undetected earlier. The relative uptake values (RUVs) (mean +/- SEM) were 12.8 +/- 5.8, 4.1 +/- 1.6, and 3.5 +/- 4.2 in liver, bone, and brain lesions, respectively, and 5.9 +/- 2.4, 2.8 +/- 0.7, 4.0 +/- 0.7, and 0.20 +/- 0.1 in normal liver, spleen, kidneys, and brain tissue, respectively. PET scanning after administration of (89)Zr-trastuzumab at appropriate doses allows visualization and quantification of uptake in HER2-positive lesions in patients with metastatic breast cancer.

                Author and article information

                Front Pharmacol
                Front Pharmacol
                Front. Pharmacol.
                Frontiers in Pharmacology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                24 May 2016
                : 7
                1Department of Hematology, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, Netherlands
                2Department of Medical Oncology, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, Netherlands
                3Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, Netherlands
                4Department of Clinical Pharmacology and Pharmacy, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, Netherlands
                Author notes

                Edited by: Nicolau Beckmann, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research, Switzerland

                Reviewed by: Sridhar Nimmagadda, Johns Hopkins University, USA; Andrew Mark Scott, Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute, Australia; Vania Kenanova, 121 Bio, LLC., USA

                *Correspondence: Yvonne W. S. Jauw yws.jauw@

                This article was submitted to Experimental Pharmacology and Drug Discovery, a section of the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology

                Copyright © 2016 Jauw, Menke-van der Houven van Oordt, Hoekstra, Hendrikse, Vugts, Zijlstra, Huisman and van Dongen.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 48, Pages: 15, Words: 11384
                Funded by: KWF Kankerbestrijding 10.13039/501100004622
                Award ID: VU2013-5839


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