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Concept: Positron


Because curcumin’s anti-inflammatory properties may protect the brain from neurodegeneration, we studied its effect on memory in non-demented adults and explored its impact on brain amyloid and tau accumulation using 2-(1-{6-[(2-[F-18]fluoroethyl)(methyl)amino]-2-naphthyl}ethylidene)malononitrile positron emission tomography (FDDNP-PET).

Concepts: Neurology, Carbon-11, Fluorine-18, Hippocampus, Positron emission, Positron, Alzheimer's disease, Positron emission tomography


Positron emission tomography (PET) with (15)O tracers provides essential information in patients with cerebral vascular disorders, such as cerebral blood flow (CBF), oxygen extraction fraction (OEF), and metabolic rate of oxygen (CMRO(2)). However, most of techniques require an additional C(15)O scan for compensating cerebral blood volume (CBV). We aimed to establish a technique to calculate all functional images only from a single dynamic PET scan, without losing accuracy or statistical certainties. The technique was an extension of previous dual-tracer autoradiography (DARG) approach, but based on the basis function method (DBFM), thus estimating all functional parametric images from a single session of dynamic scan acquired during the sequential administration of H(2)(15)O and (15)O(2). Validity was tested on six monkeys by comparing global OEF by PET with those by arteriovenous blood sampling, and tested feasibility on young healthy subjects. The mean DBFM-derived global OEF was 0.57±0.06 in monkeys, in an agreement with that by the arteriovenous method (0.54±0.06). Image quality was similar and no significant differences were seen from DARG; 3.57%±6.44% and 3.84%±3.42% for CBF, and -2.79%±11.2% and -6.68%±10.5% for CMRO(2). A simulation study demonstrated similar error propagation between DBFM and DARG. The DBFM method enables accurate assessment of CBF and CMRO(2) without additional CBV scan within significantly shortened examination period, in clinical settings.Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow & Metabolism advance online publication, 12 December 2012; doi:10.1038/jcbfm.2012.188.

Concepts: Functional magnetic resonance imaging, Medical imaging, Carbon-11, Positron emission, Metabolism, Fluorine-18, Positron, Positron emission tomography


Fever of unknown origin is a diagnostic challenge. Among its causes are of large caliber vessels vasculitis (LCVV), including Takayasu arteritis (TA) and giant cell arteritis (GCA). Early diagnosis is vital to prevent fibrosis of the vessel wall, and consequently, stenoses, aneurysms or occlusions. Imaging techniques can be of great help in recent years, highlighting the temporal artery through ultrasound, MRI and PET-CT.

Concepts: Arteritis, Blood vessel, Positron, Takayasu's arteritis, Radiology, Giant cell arteritis, Positron emission tomography, Medical imaging


Since prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) has been identified as a diagnostic target for prostate cancer, many urea-based small PSMA-targeting molecules were developed. First, the clinical application of these Ga-68 labelled compounds in positron emission tomography (PET) showed their diagnostic potential. Besides, the therapy of prostate cancer is a demanding field, and the use of radiometals with PSMA bearing ligands is a valid approach. In this work, we describe the synthesis of a new PSMA ligand, CHX-A'‘-DTPA-DUPA-Pep, the subsequent labelling with Ga-68, Lu-177 and Y-90 and the first in vitro characterization. In cell investigations with PSMA-positive LNCaP C4-2 cells, KD values of ≤14.67 ± 1.95 nM were determined, indicating high biological activities towards PSMA. Radiosyntheses with Ga-68, Lu-177 and Y-90 were developed under mild reaction conditions (room temperature, moderate pH of 5.5 and 7.4, respectively) and resulted in nearly quantitative radiochemical yields within 5 min.

Concepts: Fluorine-18, Positron emission, Metastasis, Cancer, Positron, Prostate specific membrane antigen, Prostate cancer, Positron emission tomography


The aim of this study was to develop a dual-modality positron emission tomography/magnetic resonance (PET/MR) imaging probe by radiolabeling gadolinium-containing AGuIX derivatives with the positron-emitter Gallium-68 ((68)Ga).

Concepts: Positron emission tomography, Radiation therapy, Positron, Medicine, Electron


To demonstrate the use of (18)Fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in combination ((18)FDG-PET) to assess the metabolic activity of ACL graft tissue and evaluate the utility of this technique for ligament imaging.

Concepts: Helium, Positron, Nuclear magnetic resonance, Spin, Magnetic resonance imaging, Radiology, Medical imaging, Positron emission tomography


Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is currently incurable, but there is general agreement that a minimally invasive blood biomarker for screening in preclinical stages would be crucial for future therapy. Diagnostic tools for detection of AD are either invasive like cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers or expensive such as positron emission tomography (PET) scanning. Here, we determine the secondary structure change of amyloid-β (Aβ) in human blood. This change used as blood amyloid biomarker indicates prodromal AD and correlates with CSF AD biomarkers and amyloid PET imaging in the cross-sectional BioFINDER cohort. In a further population-based longitudinal cohort (ESTHER), the blood biomarker detected AD several years before clinical diagnosis in baseline samples with a positive likelihood ratio of 7.9; that is, those who were diagnosed with AD over the years were 7.9 times more likely to test positive. This assay may open avenues for blood screening of early AD stages as a funnel for further more invasive and expensive tests.

Concepts: Medical tests, Medical imaging, Positron emission, Fluorine-18, Neuroimaging, Positron, Alzheimer's disease, Positron emission tomography


Lightning and thunderclouds are natural particle accelerators. Avalanches of relativistic runaway electrons, which develop in electric fields within thunderclouds, emit bremsstrahlung γ-rays. These γ-rays have been detected by ground-based observatories, by airborne detectors and as terrestrial γ-ray flashes from space. The energy of the γ-rays is sufficiently high that they can trigger atmospheric photonuclear reactions that produce neutrons and eventually positrons via β(+) decay of the unstable radioactive isotopes, most notably (13)N, which is generated via (14)N + γ → (13)N + n, where γ denotes a photon and n a neutron. However, this reaction has hitherto not been observed conclusively, despite increasing observational evidence of neutrons and positrons that are presumably derived from such reactions. Here we report ground-based observations of neutron and positron signals after lightning. During a thunderstorm on 6 February 2017 in Japan, a γ-ray flash with a duration of less than one millisecond was detected at our monitoring sites 0.5-1.7 kilometres away from the lightning. The subsequent γ-ray afterglow subsided quickly, with an exponential decay constant of 40-60 milliseconds, and was followed by prolonged line emission at about 0.511 megaelectronvolts, which lasted for a minute. The observed decay timescale and spectral cutoff at about 10 megaelectronvolts of the γ-ray afterglow are well explained by de-excitation γ-rays from nuclei excited by neutron capture. The centre energy of the prolonged line emission corresponds to electron-positron annihilation, providing conclusive evidence of positrons being produced after the lightning.

Concepts: Fundamental physics concepts, Spin, Lightning, Particle accelerator, Positron, Photon, Radioactive decay, Electron


Converging evidence suggests that Alzheimer disease (AD) involves insulin signaling impairment. Patients with AD and individuals at risk for AD show reduced glucose metabolism, as indexed by fludeoxyglucose F 18-labeled positron emission tomography (FDG-PET).

Concepts: Carbon-11, Positron emission, Fluorine-18, Insulin, Alzheimer's disease, Neuroimaging, Positron, Positron emission tomography


Plasmonic nanoparticle-based photothermal cancer therapy is a promising new tool to inflict localized and irreversible damage to tumor tissue by hyperthermia, without harming surrounding healthy tissue. We developed a single particle and positron emission tomography (PET)-based platform to quantitatively correlate the heat generation of plasmonic nanoparticles with their potential as cancer killing agents. In vitro, the heat generation and absorption cross-section of single irradiated nanoparticles were quantified using a temperature sensitive lipid-based assay and compared to their theoretically predicted photo-absorption. In vivo, the heat generation of irradiated nanoparticles was evaluated in human tumor xenografts in mice using 2-deoxy-2-[F-18]fluoro-D-glucose ((18)F-FDG) PET imaging. To validate the use of this platform, we quantified the photothermal efficiency of near infrared resonant silica-gold nanoshells (AuNSs) and benchmarked this against the heating of colloidal spherical, solid gold nanoparticles (AuNPs). As expected, both in vitro and in vivo the heat generation of the resonant AuNSs performed superior compared to the non-resonant AuNPs. Furthermore, the results showed that PET imaging could be reliably used to monitor early treatment response of photothermal treatment. This multidisciplinary approach provides a much needed platform to benchmark the emerging plethora of novel plasmonic nanoparticles for their potential for photothermal cancer therapy.

Concepts: Positron emission, In vivo, In vitro, Fluorine-18, Gold, Oncology, Positron, Positron emission tomography