Annals of Nuclear Medicine

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 135–143 | Cite as

[99mTc]3PRGD2 for integrin receptor imaging of esophageal cancer: a comparative study with [18F]FDG PET/CT

  • Shan Zheng
  • Zhenying Chen
  • Chao Huang
  • Yun Chen
  • Weibing MiaoEmail author
Original Article



This study was designed to investigate the efficacy of 99mtechnetium-three polyethylene glycol spacers-arginine–glycine–aspartic acid ([99mTc]3PRGD2) in the evaluation of patients with esophageal cancer.


Twenty-nine patients with a suspected esophageal lesion and for whom definite pathological diagnosis was finally obtained were recruited. Whole-body planar scanning and chest single-photon-emission computed tomography/computed tomography (SPECT/CT) were performed at 30 and 40 min, respectively, after intravenous injection of 11.1 MBq/kg of [99mTc]3PRGD2. 2-Deoxy-2-[18F] fluoro-d-glucose ([18F]FDG) positron-emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) was performed in 1 week. The tumor-to-background ratio (T/B) and the maximum standard uptake value (SUVmax) were calculated for semi-quantitative and quantitative analyses. Integrin αvβ3 was analyzed through immunohistochemistry.


The T/B, SUVmax and expression of integrin αvβ3 in malignant lesions were higher than those in benign lesions (t = 3.691, P = 0.001; t = 8.271, P = 0.000; t = 3.632, P = 0.001, respectively). There was a significant correlation between T/B and SUVmax in esophageal lesions (r = 0.660, P = 0.000). The expression of integrin αvβ3 was correlated with [99mTc]3PRGD2 uptake (r = 0.782, P = 0.000). In visual analysis, the sensitivity and accuracy of the whole-body planar RGD scan were lower than those of the chest SPECT/CT RGD scan and the [18F]FDG PET/CT scan (x2 = 6.769, P = 0.022). The sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of the chest SPECT/CT RGD scan were similar to those of the [18F] FDG PET/CT scan. In semi-quantitative analysis, the sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of chest SPECT/CT RGD from the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis were 87%, 100% and 94%, respectively [cutoff = 3.1 of T/B, area under the curve (AUC) = 0.957]. Thirteen patients (30 lymph nodes) and 16 patients (105 lymph nodes) were suspected to have lymph node metastases based on the RGD and FDG scans, respectively.


This prospective study demonstrated that [99mTc]3PRGD2 imaging is valuable for the diagnosis and staging of esophageal cancer. It may be less sensitive than [18F]FDG imaging for detecting metastatic lesions in small lymph nodes. The T/B value was correlated with the expression of integrin αvβ3.


NCT 02744729.


[99mTc]3PRGD2 Integrin αvβ3 Esophageal cancer SPECT 



We thank the Medical Isotopes Research Center of Peking University in China for the support with the 3PRGD2 kit.


This work was financially supported by the Science Foundation for Young Scientists of the Fujian Health and Family Planning Commission (2015-1-51).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Nuclear Medicine 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shan Zheng
    • 1
  • Zhenying Chen
    • 1
  • Chao Huang
    • 1
  • Yun Chen
    • 1
  • Weibing Miao
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Nuclear Medicinethe 1st Affiliated Hospital of Fujian Medical UniversityFuzhouChina

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