Imaging lung tumors with peptide-based radioligands

M. Gotthardt, M. Béhé, H. Alfke and T. Behr

Department of Nuclear Medicine, Philipps-University of Marburg, Germany.
Sep, 2003



The somatostatin analogue octreotide was the first radiopeptide to be used for the scintigraphic diagnosis of tumors. Somatostatin receptor scintigraphy (SRS) has proven its value, especially in the detection of gut neuroendocrine tumors. In some tumor types, it is considered the diagnostic gold standard. In carcinoid tumors of the lung, SRS is of major importance in diagnostic workup. Furthermore, the combination of computed tomography scanning and SRS is a reliable and cost-effective approach for the evaluation of single pulmonary nodules. Despite these favorable properties, SRS fails in the detection of metastases of lung cancer. The problem of false-positive results in SRS resulting from inflammatory disease might be overcome by the use of new radiopeptides such as cholecystokinin-B receptor-binding gastrin analogues. This article focuses on the current status of peptide-receptor scintigraphy in the diagnosis of lung tumors and on future developments in this field.