University of Minnesota
Medical School
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Brain Tumor Imaging and the Blood-Brain Barrier                 

Posting expires on 08/31/2017

Research Site:
University of Minnesota - Duluth

Type of Research:

Biomedical Sciences

This opportunity does not have a stipend.

Glioblastoma (GBM) is an aggressive primary brain tumor with a dismal prognosis. Despite surgical resection, external beam radiation therapy and chemotherapy, median survival is only 15-18 months.  Most patients will develop recurrent disease after completing initial therapy.  Standard therapy for recurrence includes the VEGF targeting antibody bevacizumab, but overall survival (OS) remains poor.
The development of new imaging techniques for GBM that contribute to improving maximal tumor resection is likely to improve patient outcomes.

While initial studies with FLT-PET  (3-deoxy-3-18F-fluorothymidine-PET) in glioma hinted at a potentially valuable imaging tool, the poor penetration of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) penetration hinders further development. This may partially be the result of the action of P-glycoprotein, an efflux transporter that prevents brain penetration of blood-borne drugs. This study will evaluate the feasibility of using intranasal delivery of FLT (3-deoxy-3-18F-fluorothymidine ), with an eventual goal to evaluate the potential for intranasal FLT-PET to image brain tumors. The intranasal route of administration will circumvent the BBB, which will allow for more effective penetration into tumor tissue.  Probenecid, a P-glycoprotein inhibitor, may be evaluated in conjunction with FLT. To date, no studies have been done with intranasal delivery of FLT.  Therefore, our initial efforts will be to demonstrate the feasibility of the approach utilizing an animal model to document effective CNS penetration with FLT at levels that would be potentially appropriate to evaluate the proliferative rate of tumor tissue by PET imaging.  

Interested or have questions? 

Lester R. Drewes,, 218-726-7925

Posted on 09/01/2016