99mTc-CXCL8 SPECT to Monitor Disease Activity in Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

E. Aarntzen, R. Hermsen, J. Drenth, O. Boerman and W. Oyen




Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs) are defined as chronic relapsing immune-mediated disorders of the gastrointestinal tract. IBD exacerbations are characterized by recruitment of mainly CXCL8 receptor-expressing activated neutrophils into the intestinal wall, leading to severe damage. Considering its chronic relapsing character, accurate and timely diagnosis of an exacerbation is pivotal for early adaptation of the treatment and reduction of the disease burden. However, endoscopic evaluation is invasive and associated with an increased risk of perforation. We previously developed a (99m)Tc-labeled CXCL8 preparation in preclinical models including colitis and clinical studies.In this study, we investigate the accuracy of (99m)Tc-CXCL8 SPECT to detect and localize disease activity in a prospective series of patients with IBD. Thirty patients (15 Crohns disease, 15 ulcerative colitis) participated, and 92 segmental pairs of histology and (99m)Tc-CXCL8 scans were studied. Imaging was performed after injection of 400 MBq of (99m)Tc-CXCL8. Planar and SPECT images of the abdomen were acquired at 30 min and 4 h after the injection.The overall sensitivity and specificity on a per-patient basis for the detection of active disease were 95\% and 44\% for (99m)Tc-CXCL8 scan and 71\% and 70\% for endoscopy. The degree of (99m)Tc-CXCL8 accumulation correlated to the degree of neutrophilic influx in affected mucosa. Sensitivity and specificity on a per-segment basis, calculated from the 92 segmental pairs, were 82\% and 72\%, negative predictive value was 81\%, and overall positive predictive value was 74\%. Specificity could be increased at the expense of sensitivity using different cutoffs. In 74 segmental pairs, overall sensitivity and specificity for endoscopy were 74\% and 85\%, positive predictive value was 81\%, and negative predictive value was 79\%.(99m)Tc-CXCL8 SPECT provides a novel imaging technique to target neutrophil recruitment to the intestinal wall, especially in moderate to severe exacerbations of IBD. Further validation studies are warranted to potentiate (99m)Tc-CXCL8 SPECT as a biomarker to scale up or step down treatment with immune-modulating drugs in a personalized fashion.

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