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PET/MR effective for imaging recurrent prostate cancer
Date:6/11/2013

Vancouver, British Columbia When prostate cancer makes a comeback, it becomes increasingly important to have exceptional imaging available to find all possible regions where cancer has spread to other parts of the body, or metastasized, in order to plan the best possible treatment. A relatively new imaging system that simultaneously combines positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance (PET/MR) demonstrates a higher capacity for mapping recurrent prostate cancer than the already high standard of integrated PET and computed tomography (PET/CT), say researchers presenting a study at the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging's 2013 Annual Meeting.

PET/MR provides superb soft tissue contrast with its MR component, compared to PET/CT, which focuses more on structure and density imaging with CT. This study ushers PET/MR into the ring of clinical practice by exhibiting clear benefits for prostate cancer patients with metastatic tumors.

In this comparative study recurrent prostate cancer is imaged both with PET/MR and PET/CT with the molecular imaging agent C-11 choline, which was approved for this use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last year. Choline is a naturally occurring B vitamin complex that is avidly bound by prostate cells upon injection, even those that have traveled through the bloodstream and taken up residence to develop metastatic tumors elsewhere, which is especially likely in the lymph nodes and in bone.

"The combination of PET, here with C-11 choline, and functional MRI provides complementary information that increases diagnostic certainty with higher detection rates, especially for more precise localization of recurrence. This could help to better tailor specific therapy, e.g., radiation of the pelvis versus antihormonal therapy, for patients with metastatic prostate cancer," said Matthias Eiber, MD, lead scientist for the study from TU Muenchen in Munich, Germany.

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Contact: Susan Martonik
smartonik@snmmi.org
703-652-6773
Society of Nuclear Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

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