Targeted therapy using alpha emitters.
Radionuclides such as 211At and 212Bi which decay by the emission of alpha-particles are attractive for certain applications of targeted radiotherapy. The tissue penetration of 212Bi and 211At alpha-particles is equivalent to only a few cell diameters, offering the possibility of combining cell-specific targeting with radiation of similar range. Unlike the beta-particles emitted by radionuclides such as 131I and 90Y, alpha-particles are radiation of high linear energy transfer and thus greater biological effectiveness. Several approaches have been explored for targeted radiotherapy with 212Bi- and 211At-labelled substances including colloids, monoclonal antibodies, metabolic precursors, receptor-avid ligands and other lower molecular weight molecules. An additional agent which exemplifies the promise of alpha-emitting radiopharmaceuticals is meta-[211At]astatobenzylguanidine. The toxicity of this compound under single-cell conditions, determined both by [3H]thymidine incorporation and by limiting dilution clonogenic assays, for human neuroblastoma cells is of the order of 1000 times higher than that of meta-[131I] iodobenzylguanidine. For meta-[211At] astatobenzylguanidine, the Do value was equivalent to only 6-7 211At atoms bound per cell. These results suggest that meta-[211At] astatobenzylguanidine might be valuable for the targeted radiotherapy of micrometastatic neuroblastomas.
Vaidyanathan, G; Zalutsky, MR
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