Researchers develop new approach that uses single PET scan to personalize cancer treatment

IMAGE: These are maximal intensity projection images of kidneys and spleen 90 minutes post injection of 18F-BMS-986192 only (left) and of 18F-BMS-986192 and co-administration of 1 mg/kg BMS-986192 in the same… view more 

Credit: D Donnelly et al., Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research and Development, Princeton, N.J.

RESTON, Va. – Researchers have developed a same-day, noninvasive positron emission tomography (PET)-based imaging approach to assess PD-L1 positive tumors, and the study is presented in the featured article of The Journal of Nuclear Medicine‘s March issue.

A healthy immune system strikes a delicate balance between eradicating infections and cancers and not overreacting to damage one’s own tissue. Immune checkpoints help control the immune response, but tumors exploit these checkpoint pathways by expressing special proteins that evade antitumor immune responses. One major checkpoint inhibitor pathway is the PD-1 pathway, and its ligand is PD-L1.

In this study, the PD-L1 ligand, which enables cancer to evade a person’s immune system, has been successfully targeted for the first time with a fluorine-18 (18F)-labeled PD-L1 radioligand. Until now, efforts to predict response to treatments targeting PD-1 or PD-L1 have typically been limited to evaluation of a single patient biopsy sample.

“This approach represents an opportunity for


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