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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 286-293

18F-fallypride and 11C-methionine positron emission tomography/computed tomography for the study of prolactinomas and nonfunctioning pituitary adenomas: A case series

1 Uruguayan Centre of Molecular Imaging; Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging Centre, Clinical Hospital, University of the Republic (UdelaR), Montevideo, Uruguay
2 Department of Endocrinology, Clinical Hospital, University of the Republic (UdelaR), Montevideo, Uruguay
3 Uruguayan Centre of Molecular Imaging, Montevideo, Uruguay
4 Department of Neurosurgery, Clinical Hospital, University of the Republic (UdelaR), Montevideo, Uruguay

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Omar Alonso
Av. Ricaldoni 2010, Montevideo
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/wjnm.WJNM_83_20

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Some studies have assessed the expression of dopaminergic dopamine 2 (D2)/3 receptors in prolactinomas and nonfunctioning pituitary adenomas (NFPA) by positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) with 11C-raclopride, proving that this modality can be useful to predict the response to treatment with dopamine agonists. However, the use of 11C-labeled radiotracers is limited, as it requires a cyclotron in the PET center. 18F-fallypride is a radiotracer that has proven useful in assessing the expression of D2/3 receptors. As it is labeled with 18F, it can be produced and transported to distant PET centers. There are no studies on the usefulness of 18F-fallypride for the evaluation of patients with prolactinomas and NFPA. The aim of this study was to describe the first case series of patients with prolactinomas and NFPA studied with 18F-fallypride and 11C-methionine PET/CT to reveal D2/3 expression and amino acid (AA) metabolism. 18F-fallypride and 11C-methionine uptake were assessed in a case series of six patients, five with prolactinomas and one with a NFPA, and compared with clinical presentation and follow-up at 6–18 months. All patients presented with macroadenomas, with a wide range of AA metabolism, as revealed by 11C-methionine PET/CT. 18F-fallypride PET/CT identified low to moderate/high D2/3 expression in the tumors. The patient that presented low expression of D2/3 in the tumor and high AA metabolism showed a poor response to DA therapy. 18F-fallypride was able to reveal D2/3 receptor expression in prolactinomas and NFPA, with the advantage of been a more accessible radiotracer in comparison with previous 11C labeled analogs.

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