Nuclear medicine communications

Preclinical evaluation of ⁸⁹Zr-labeled human antitransferrin receptor monoclonal antibody as a PET probe using a pancreatic cancer mouse model.

PMID 25460304


Pancreatic cancer is aggressive and its prognosis remains poor; thus, effective therapy is urgently needed. Transferrin receptor (TfR) is highly expressed in pancreatic cancer and is considered to be a good candidate for molecular-targeted therapy. We radiolabeled and evaluated fully human anti-TfR monoclonal antibodies as a new PET probe for evaluating the biodistribution of the anti-TfR antibody in pancreatic cancer. TfR expression was evaluated in four human pancreatic cancer (MIAPaCa-2, PANC-1, BxPC-3, and AsPC-1) and murine A4 cell lines. The binding of 125I-labeled anti-TfR antibodies (TSP-A01, TSP-A02, TSP-A03, and TSP-A04) to MIAPaCa-2 cells was compared. 125I-labeled, 67Ga-labeled, and 89Zr-labeled TSP-A01 were evaluated by cell binding, competitive inhibition, and internalization assays. Biodistribution studies of 125I-labeled and 89Zr-labeled TSP-A01 were conducted in mice bearing MIAPaCa-2 and A4 tumors. PET imaging with [89Zr]TSP-A01 was carried out. MIAPaCa-2 cells showed the highest TfR expression in vitro and in vivo, whereas A4 cells showed no expression. Of the four antibodies, [125I]TSP-A01 showed the highest binding to MIAPaCa-2 cells, but not to A4 cells. The dissociation constant of TSP-A01 was 0.29 nmol/l. Uptake of radiolabeled TSP-A01, especially [89Zr]TSP-A01, was significantly higher in MIAPaCa-2 tumors than in A4 tumors. PET with [89Zr]TSP-A01 clearly visualized MIAPaCa-2 xenografts but not A4 xenografts. [89Zr]TSP-A01 is a promising PET probe for evaluating the accumulation of anti-TfR antibody in pancreatic cancer and has the potential to facilitate the selection of appropriate patients who would benefit from anti-TfR antibody therapy.