Research Papers:

Dynamic fluorescent imaging with the activatable probe, γ-glutamyl hydroxymethyl rhodamine green in the detection of peritoneal cancer metastases: Overcoming the problem of dilution when using a sprayable optical probe

Yuko Nakamura, Toshiko Harada, Tadanobu Nagaya, Kazuhide Sato, Shuhei Okuyama, Peter L. Choyke and Hisataka Kobayashi _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:51124-51137. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.9898

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Yuko Nakamura1, Toshiko Harada1, Tadanobu Nagaya1, Kazuhide Sato1, Shuhei Okuyama1, Peter L. Choyke1, Hisataka Kobayashi1

1Molecular Imaging Program, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA

Correspondence to:

Hisataka Kobayashi, email: [email protected]

Keywords: kinetic map, green emitting probe, autofluorescence, γ-glutamyltranspeptidase, peritoneal cancer metastases

Received: April 25, 2016     Accepted: May 22, 2016     Published: June 07, 2016


Optical fluorescence-guided imaging is increasingly used to guide surgery and endoscopic procedures. Activatable probes are particularly useful because of high target-to-background ratios that increase sensitivity for tiny cancer foci. However, green fluorescent activatable probes suffer from interference from autofluorescence found in biological tissue. The purpose of this study was to determine if dynamic imaging can be used to differentiate specific fluorescence arising from an activated probe in a tumor from autofluorescence in background tissues especially when low concentrations of the dye are applied. Serial fluorescence imaging was performed using various concentrations of γ-glutamyl hydroxymethyl rhodamine green (gGlu-HMRG) which was sprayed on the peritoneal surface with tiny implants of SHIN3-DsRed ovarian cancer tumors. Temporal differences in signal between specific green fluorescence in cancer foci and non-specific autofluorescence in background tissue were measured at 5, 10, 20 and 30 min after application of gGlu-HMRG and were processed into three kinetic maps reflecting maximum fluorescence signal (MF), wash-in rate (WIR), and area under the curve (AUC), respectively. Using concentrations up to 10 μM of gGlu-HMRG, the fluorescence intensity of cancer foci was significantly higher than that of small intestine but only at 30 min. However, on kinetic maps derived from dynamic fluorescence imaging, the signal of cancer foci was significantly higher than that of small intestine after only 5 min even at concentrations as low as 2.5 μM of gGlu-HMRG (p < 0.01). At lower concentrations, kinetic maps derived from dynamic fluorescence imaging were superior to unprocessed images for cancer detection.

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