Improved PSMA-targeting agent more effective for prostate cancer diagnosis/therapy in mice

IMAGE: Imaging at 1, 4, 24, and 48 hours post injection of 86Y-DOTA-EB-MCG shows tumor uptake. view more 

Credit: Z Wang et al., National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD

PHILADELPHIA – Research presented at the 2018 Annual Meeting of the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) demonstrates a potentially more effective method of imaging and treating prostate cancer that modifies a prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA)-targeted radioligand by adding an albumin-binding Evans blue (an azo dye) derivative.

Several radioligands that target PSMA have been clinically introduced as a new class of theranostics for prostate cancer diagnosis and therapy. One of them, methyl cysteine-glutamate urea (MCG), has been labeled successfully with both fluorescent dyes and radioisotopes for prostate cancer imaging.

For this study using a mouse model, MCG was conjugated with an albumin-binding Evans blue (EB) derivative to further improve tumor delivery and increase the therapeutic effect. Albumin, the most abundant plasma protein in human blood, is a natural transport protein and has a long circulatory half-life.

“Albumin-based drug delivery systems play a very important role in the treatment of diabetes and are also expanding to the field of oncology,” explains Zhantong Wang, corresponding author and a researcher at


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