Comparison of commercial 5-aminolevulinic acid (Gliolan®) and the pharmacy-compounded solution fluorescence in glioblastoma

  • Santiago Garfias ArjonaEmail author
  • Mónica Lara Almunia
  • Javier Ángel Ibáñez Domínguez
  • Olga Delgado Sánchez
  • Priam Villalonga
  • Ruth Villalonga-Planells
  • Javier Pierola Lopetegui
  • Joan Bestard Escalas
  • Albert Maimó Barceló
  • Marta Brell Doval
Technical Note - Tumor - Glioma
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Tumor – Glioma



5-Aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) has become an important assistant in glioblastoma (GB) surgery. Unfortunately, its price affects its widespread use.


The aim of this study was to compare commercial 5-ALA with the pharmacy-compounded solution.


Using first an in vitro experimental approach, different concentrations of the pharmacy-compounded solution and commercial 5-ALA were tested in U87MG, LN229, U373, and T98G commercial glioblastoma cell lines. Fluorescence intensity was compared for each concentration by flow cytometry. Mean fluorescence of culture supernatant and lysate samples were analyzed. In a second phase, both preparations were used for surgical glioblastoma resection and tumor samples were analyzed by confocal microscopy. Mean fluorescence intensity was analyzed for each preparation and compared.


There was a high variability of fluorescence intensity between cell lines, but each cell line showed similar fluorescence for both preparations (compounded preparation and commercial 5-ALA). In the same way, both preparations had similar fluorescence intensity in glioblastoma samples.


Both, compounded and commercial 5-ALA preparations produce equivalent fluorescent responses in human glioblastoma cells. Fluorescence intensity is cell line specific, but fluorescent properties of both preparations are undistinguishable.


Aminolevulinic acid Glioblastoma Fluorescence 



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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Santiago Garfias Arjona
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mónica Lara Almunia
    • 1
  • Javier Ángel Ibáñez Domínguez
    • 1
  • Olga Delgado Sánchez
    • 2
  • Priam Villalonga
    • 3
    • 4
    • 7
  • Ruth Villalonga-Planells
    • 5
  • Javier Pierola Lopetegui
    • 6
    • 7
  • Joan Bestard Escalas
    • 6
    • 7
  • Albert Maimó Barceló
    • 6
    • 7
  • Marta Brell Doval
    • 1
  1. 1.Neurosurgical Department, Son Espases University HospitalMajorcaSpain
  2. 2.Pharmacology Department, Son Espases University HospitalMajorcaSpain
  3. 3.Cancer Cell Biology Laboratory, Institut Universitari d’Investigació en Ciències de la Salut (IUNICS)Universitat de les Illes Balears and Institut d’Investigació Sanitària Illes Balears (IdISBa)MajorcaSpain
  4. 4.Departament of Fundamental BiologyUniversitat de les Illes BalearsMajorcaSpain
  5. 5.Departament of ChemistryUniversitat de les Illes BalearsMajorcaSpain
  6. 6.Research DepartmentSon Espases University HospitalMajorcaSpain
  7. 7.Institut d’Investigació Sanitària Illes Balears (IdISBa)MajorcaSpain

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