Click Chemistry in the Design and Production of Hybrid Tracers.
ABSTRACT: Hybrid tracers containing both fluorescent and radioactive imaging labels have demonstrated clinical potential during sentinel lymph node procedures. To combine these two labels on a single targeting vector that allows tumor-targeted imaging, end-labeling strategies are often applied. For ?v?3-integrin-targeting hybrid tracers, providing an excellent model for evaluating tracer development strategies, end-labeling-based synthesis provides a rather cumbersome synthesis strategy. Hence, the aim of this study was to investigate the use of heterobifunctional cyanine dyes in a click-chemistry-based synthesis strategy for RGD-based hybrid tracers. The triazole-based hybrid tracers DTPA.DBCO.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] and DTPA.BCN.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] were obtained in fewer steps than DTPA-Lys(Cy5(SO 3 )methyl)-Cys-c[RGDyK] and had partition coefficients of log?P (o/w) = -2.55 ± 0.10, -1.45 ± 0.03, and -2.67 ± 0.12, respectively. Both tracers were chemically stable, and the brightnesses of DTPA.DBCO.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] and DTPA.BCN.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] were, respectively, 23 × 103 and 40 × 103 M-1 cm-1; lower than that of the reference tracer DTPA-Lys(Cy5(SO 3 )methyl)-Cys-c[RGDyK] (50 × 103 M-1 cm-1). Assessment of serum protein binding revealed no statistically significant difference (44 ± 2 and 40 ± 2% bound for DTPA.DBCO.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] and DTPA.BCN.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK], respectively; 36 ± 5% bound for DTPA-Lys(Cy5(SO 3 )methyl)-Cys-c[RGDyK]; p > 0.05). DTPA.DBCO.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] (K D = 17.5 ± 6.0) had a statistically significantly higher affinity than the reference compound DTPA-Lys(Cy5(SO 3 )methyl)-Cys-c[RGDyK] (K D = 30.3 ± 5.7; p < 0.0001), but DTPA.BCN.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] had a statistically significantly lower affinity (K D = 76.5 ± 18.3 nM; p < 0.0001). Both [ 111 In]DTPA.DBCO.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] and [ 111 In]DTPA.BCN.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] enabled in vivo visualization of the 4T1 tumor via fluorescence and single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging. Biodistribution data (% ID/g) revealed a significant increase in nonspecific uptake in the kidney, liver, and muscle for both [ 111 In]DTPA.DBCO.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK] and [ 111 In]DTPA.BCN.N 3 (SO 3 )-Cy5-c[RGDyK]. As a result of the higher background activity, the tumor-to-background ratio of the click-labeled RGD analogues was twofold lower compared to the end-labeled reference compound. The use of click chemistry labeling did not yield a pronounced negative effect on serum protein binding, in vitro stability, and receptor affinity; and tumors could still be visualized using SPECT and fluorescence imaging. However, quantitative in vivo biodistribution data suggest that the triazole and strained cyclooctyne moieties associated with this type of click chemistry negatively influence the pharmacokinetics of RGD peptides. Nevertheless, the design might still hold promise for other targets/targeting moieties.
Project description:?(v)?(3) integrin is involved in (tumor-induced) angiogenesis and is a promising candidate for the specific visualization of both primary tumors and of their distant metastases. Combination of radioactive and fluorescent imaging labels in a single multimodal, or rather hybrid, RGD-based imaging agent enables integration of pre-, intra-, and postoperative angiogenesis imaging. A hybrid imaging agent targeting the ?(v)?(3) integrin--(111)In-MSAP-RGD (MSAP = multifunctional single-attachment-point reagent), which contains a targeting moiety, a pentetic acid (DTPA) chelate, and a cyanine dye--was evaluated for its potential value in combined lesion detection and interventional molecular imaging in a 4T1 mouse breast cancer model. SPECT/CT and fluorescence imaging were used to visualize the tumor in vivo. Tracer distribution was evaluated ex vivo down to the microscopic level. The properties of (111)In-MSAP-RGD were compared with those of (111)In-DTPA-RGD. Biodistribution studies revealed a prolonged retention and increased tumor accumulation of (111)In-MSAP-RGD relative to (111)In-DTPA-RGD. With (111)In-MSAP-RGD, identical features could be visualized preoperatively (SPECT/CT) and intraoperatively (fluorescence imaging). As well as the primary tumor, (111)In-MSAP-RGD also enabled detection and accurate excision of distant metastases in the head and neck region of the mice. Therefore, the hybrid RGD derivative (111)In-MSAP-RGD shows potential in preoperative planning and fluorescence-based surgical intervention.
Project description:Development of theranostic concepts that include inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and laser ablation ICP-MS (LA-ICP-MS) imaging can be hindered by the lack of a direct comparison to more standardly used methods for in vitro and in vivo evaluation; e.g. fluorescence or nuclear medicine. In this study a bimodal (or rather, hybrid) tracer that contains both a fluorescent dye and a chelate was used to evaluate the existence of a direct link between mass spectrometry (MS) and in vitro and in vivo molecular imaging findings using fluorescence and radioisotopes. At the same time, the hybrid label was used to determine whether the use of a single isotope label would allow for MS-based diagnostics.A hybrid label that contained both a DTPA chelate (that was coordinated with either 165Ho or 111In) and a Cy5 fluorescent dye was coupled to the chemokine receptor 4 (CXCR4) targeting peptide Ac-TZ14011 (hybrid-Cy5-Ac-TZ4011). This receptor targeting tracer was used to 1) validate the efficacy of (165Ho-based) mass-cytometry in determining the receptor affinity via comparison with fluorescence-based flow cytometry (Cy5), 2) evaluate the microscopic binding pattern of the tracer in tumor cells using both fluorescence confocal imaging (Cy5) and LA-ICP-MS-imaging (165Ho), 3) compare in vivo biodistribution patterns obtained with ICP-MS (165Ho) and radiodetection (111In) after intravenous administration of hybrid-Cy5-Ac-TZ4011 in tumor-bearing mice. Finally, LA-ICP-MS-imaging (165Ho) was linked to fluorescence-based analysis of excised tissue samples (Cy5).Analysis with both mass-cytometry and flow cytometry revealed a similar receptor affinity, respectively 352 ± 141 nM and 245 ± 65 nM (p = 0.08), but with a much lower detection sensitivity for the first modality. In vitro LA-ICP-MS imaging (165Ho) enabled clear discrimination between CXCR4 positive and negative cells, but fluorescence microscopy was required to determine the intracellular distribution. In vivo biodistribution patterns obtained with ICP-MS (165Ho) and radiodetection (111In) of the hybrid peptide were shown to be similar. Assessment of tracer distribution in excised tissues revealed the location of tracer uptake with both LA-ICP-MS-imaging and fluorescence imaging.Lanthanide-isotope chelation expands the scope of fluorescent/radioactive hybrid tracers to include MS-based analytical tools such as mass-cytometry, ICP-MS and LA-ICP-MS imaging in molecular pathology. In contradiction to common expectations, MS detection using a single chelate imaging agent was shown to be feasible, enabling a direct link between nuclear medicine-based imaging and theranostic methods.
Project description:This study prepared three structurally related zinc-dipicolylamine (ZnDPA) tracers with [(111)In] labels and conducted biodistribution and single-photon emission computed tomography/computed tomography (SPECT/CT) imaging studies of a mouse leg infection model.Two monovalent tracers, ZnDPA-[(111)In]DTPA and ZnDPA-[(111)In]DOTA, each with a single zinc-dipicolylamine targeting unit, and a divalent tracer, Bis(ZnDPA)-[(111)In]DTPA, with two zinc-dipicolylamine units were prepared. Organ biodistribution and SPECT and CT imaging studies were performed on living mice with a leg infection created by injection of clinically relevant Gram positive Streptococcus pyogenes. Fluorescent and luminescent Eu(3+)-labeled versions of these tracers were also prepared and used to measure relative affinity for the exterior membrane surface of bacterial cells and mimics of healthy mammalian cells.All three (111)In-labeled radiotracers were prepared with a radiopurity of >90 %. The biodistribution studies showed that the two monovalent tracers were cleared from the body through the liver and kidney, with retained percentage injected dose for all organs of <8 % at 20 h and infected leg target to non-target ratio (T/NT) ratio of ?3.0. Clearance of the divalent tracer from the bloodstream was slower and primarily through the liver, with a retained percentage injected dose for all organs <37 % at 20 h and T/NT ratio rising to 6.2 after 20 h. The SPECT/CT imaging indicated the same large difference in tracer pharmacokinetics and higher accumulation of the divalent tracer at the site of infection.All three [(111)In]-ZnDPA tracers selectively targeted the site of a clinically relevant mouse infection model that could not be discerned by visual external inspection of the living animal. The highest target selectivity, observed with a divalent tracer equipped with two zinc-dipicolylamine targeting units, compares quite favorably with the imaging selectivities previously reported for other nuclear tracers that target bacterial cell surfaces. The tracer pharmacokinetics depended heavily on tracer molecular structure suggesting that it may be possible to rapidly fine tune the structural properties for optimized in vivo imaging performance and clinical translation.
Project description:We hypothesized that chelating Gd(III) to 1,4,7-tris(carboxymethylaza)cyclododecane-10-azaacetylamide (DO3A) on peptide nucleic acid (PNA) hybridization probes would provide a magnetic resonance genetic imaging agent capable of hybridization to a specific mRNA. Because of the low sensitivity of Gd(III) as an magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agent, a single Gd-DO3A complex per PNA hybridization agent could not provide enough contrast for detection of cancer gene mRNAs, even at thousands of mRNA copies per cell. To increase the Gd(III) shift intensity of MRI genetic imaging agents, we extended a novel DO3An-polydiamidopropanoyl (PDAPm) dendrimer, up to n = 16, from the N-terminus of KRAS PNA hybridization agents by solid phase synthesis. A C-terminal D(Cys-Ser-Lys-Cys) cyclized peptide analog of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) was included to enable receptor-mediated cellular uptake. Molecular dynamic simulation of the (Gd-DO3A-AEEA)16-PDAP4-AEEA2-KRAS PNA-AEEA-D(Cys-Ser-Lys-Cys) genetic imaging nanoparticles in explicit water yielded a pair correlation function similar to that of PAMAM dendrimers, and a predicted structure in which the PDAP dendron did not sequester the PNA. Thermal melting measurements indicated that the size of the PDAP dendron included in the (DO3A-AEEA)n-PDAPm-AEEA2-KRAS PNA-AEEA-D(Cys-Ser-Lys-Cys) probes (up to 16 Gd(III) cations per PNA) did not depress the melting temperatures (Tm) of the complementary PNA/RNA hybrid duplexes. The Gd(III) dendrimer PNA genetic imaging agents in phantom solutions displayed significantly greater T1 relaxivity per probe (r1 = 30.64 +/- 2.68 mM(-1) s(-1) for n = 2, r1 = 153.84 +/- 11.28 mM(-1) s(-1) for n = 8) than Gd-DTPA (r1 = 10.35 +/- 0.37 mM(-1) s(-1)), but less than that of (Gd-DO3A)32-PAMAM dendrimer (r1 = 771.84 +/- 20.48 mM(-1) s(-1)) (P < 0.05). Higher generations of PDAP dendrimers with 32 or more Gd-DO3A residues attached to PNA-D(Cys-Ser-Lys-Cys) genetic imaging agents might provide greater contrast for more sensitive detection.
Project description:Direct bromination of the tyrosine residues of peptides and antibodies with bromine-76, to create probes for PET imaging, has been reported. For peptides that do not contain tyrosine residues, however, a prosthetic group is required to achieve labeling via conjugation to other functional groups such as terminal ?-amines or lysine ?-amines. The goal of this study was to develop new strategies for labeling small peptides with Br-76 using either a direct labeling method or a prosthetic group, depending on the available functional group on the peptides. A new labeling agent, N-succinimidyl-3-[(76)Br]bromo-2,6-dimethoxybenzoate ([(76)Br]SBDMB) was prepared for cyclic RGD peptide labeling. N-succinimidyl-2, 6-dimethoxybenzoate was also used to pre-attach a 2, 6-dimethoxybenzoyl (DMB) moiety to the peptide, which could then be labeled with Br-76. A competitive cell binding assay was performed to determine the binding affinity of the brominated peptides. PET imaging of U87MG human glioblastoma xenografted mice was performed using [(76)Br]-BrE[c(RGDyK)](2) and [(76)Br]-BrDMB-E[c(RGDyK)](2). An ex vivo biodistribution assay was performed to confirm PET quantification. The mechanisms of bromination reaction between DMB-c(RGDyK) and the brominating agent CH(3)COOBr were investigated with the SCRF-B3LYP/6-31G* method with the Gaussian 09 program package. The yield for direct labeling of c(RGDyK) and E[c(RGDyK)](2) using chloramine-T and peracetic acid at ambient temperature was greater than 50%. The yield for [(76)Br]SBDMB was over 60% using peracetic acid. The conjugation yields for labeling c(RGDfK) and c(RGDyK) were over 70% using the prosthetic group at room temperature. Labeling yield for pre-conjugated peptides was over 60%. SDMB conjugation and bromination did not affect the binding affinity of the peptides with integrin receptors. Both [(76)Br]Br-E[c(RGDyK)](2) and [(76)Br]BrDMB-E[c(RGDyK)](2) showed high tumor uptake in U87MG tumor bearing mice. The specificity of the imaging tracers was confirmed by decreased tumor uptake after co-administration of unlabeled dimeric RGD peptides. The energy barrier of the transition state of bromination for the dimethoxybenzoyl group was about 9 kcal/mol lower than that for the tyrosine residue. In conclusion, the newly developed N-succinimidyl-2, 6-dimethoxybenzoate molecule can be used either for one step labeling through pre-conjugation or as the precursor for a Br-76 labeled prosthetic group for indirect labeling. Radiobromination on a dimethoxybenzoyl group has selectivity over radiobromination on tyrosine. The energy barrier difference of the transition states of bromination between the dimethoxybenzoyl group and the tyrosine residue may account for the reaction selectivity when both groups are present in the same molecule.
Project description:Angiogenesis is an essential component of tumour growth and, consequently, an important target both therapeutically and diagnostically. The cell adhesion molecule ?(v)?(3) integrin is a specific marker of angiogenic vessels and the most prevalent vascular integrin that binds the amino acid sequence arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD). Previous studies using RGD-targeted nanoparticles (20-50 nm diameter) of iron oxide (NPIO) for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of tumour angiogenesis, have identified a number of limitations, including non-specific extravasation, long blood half-life (reducing specific contrast) and low targeting valency. The aim of this study, therefore, was to determine whether conjugation of a cyclic RGD variant [c(RGDyK)], with enhanced affinity for ?(v)?(3), to microparticles of iron oxide (MPIO) would provide a more sensitive contrast agent for imaging of angiogenic tumour vessels. Cyclic RGD [c(RGDyK)] and RAD [c(RADyK)] based peptides were coupled to 2.8 ?m MPIO, and binding efficacy tested both in vitro and in vivo. Significantly greater specific binding of c(RGDyK)-MPIO to S-nitroso-n-acetylpenicillamine (SNAP)-stimulated human umbilical vein endothelial cells in vitro than PBS-treated cells was demonstrated under both static (14-fold increase; P < 0.001) and flow (44-fold increase; P < 0.001) conditions. Subsequently, mice bearing subcutaneous colorectal (MC38) or melanoma (B16F10) derived tumours underwent in vivo MRI pre- and post-intravenous administration of c(RGDyK)-MPIO or c(RADyK)-MPIO. A significantly greater volume of MPIO-induced hypointensities were found in c(RGDyK)-MPIO injected compared to c(RADyK)-MPIO injected mice, in both tumour models (P < 0.05). Similarly, administration of c(RGDyK)-MPIO induced a greater reduction in mean tumour T(2)* relaxation times than the control agent in both tumour models (melanoma P < 0.001; colorectal P < 0.0001). Correspondingly, MPIO density per tumour volume assessed immunohistochemically was significantly greater for c(RGDyK)-MPIO than c(RADyK)-MPIO injected animals, in both melanoma (P < 0.05) and colorectal (P < 0.0005) tumours. In both cases, binding of c(RGDyK)-MPIO co-localised with ?(v)?(3) expression. Comparison of RGD-targeted and dynamic contrast enhanced (DCE) MRI assessment of tumour perfusion indicated sensitivity to different vascular features. This study demonstrates specific binding of c(RGDyK)-MPIO to ?(v)?(3) expressing neo-vessels, with marked and quantifiable contrast and rapid clearance of unbound particles from the blood circulation compared to NPIO. Combination of this molecular MRI approach with conventional DCE MRI will enable integrated molecular, anatomical and perfusion tumour imaging.
Project description:Therapeutic potential of ?-emitting cytotoxic radionuclides (90)Y and (177)Lu has been demonstrated in numerous preclinical and clinical trials. A bifunctional chelate that can effectively complex with the radioisotopes is a critical component for molecular targeted radiotherapy (90)Y and (177)Lu. A new bifunctional chelate 5p-C-NETA with a relatively long alkyl spacer between the chelating backbone and the functional unit for conjugation to a tumor targeting moiety was synthesized. 5p-C-NETA was conjugated to a model targeting moiety, a cyclic Arg-Gly-Asp-D-Tyr-Lys (RGDyK) peptide binding integrin ?v?3 protein overexpressed on various cancers. 5p-C-NETA was conjugated to c(RGDyK) peptide and evaluated for potential use in molecular targeted radiotherapy of (90)Y and (177)Lu.5p-C-NETA conjugated with c(RGDyK) was evaluated in vitro for radiolabeling, serum stability, binding affinity, and the result of the in vitro studies of 5p-C-NETA-c(RGDyK) was compared to that of 3p-C-NETA-c(RGDyK). (177)Lu-5p-C-NETA-c(RGDyK) was further evaluated for in vivo biodistribution using gliobastoma bearing mice.The new chelate rapidly and tightly bound to a cytotoxic radioisotope for cancer therapy, (90)Y or (177)Lu with excellent radiolabeling efficiency and maximum specific activity under mild condition (>99%, RT, <1 min). (90)Y- and (177)Lu-radiolabeled complexes of the new chelator remained stable in human serum without any loss of the radiolanthanide for 14 days. Introduction of the tumor targeting RGD moiety to the new chelator made little impact on complexation kinetics and stability with (90)Y or (177)Lu. (177)Lu-radiolabeled 5p-C-NETA-c(RGDyK) conjugate was shown to target tumors in mice and produced a favorable in vivo stability profile.The results of in vitro and in vivo evaluation suggest that 5p-C-NETA is an effective bifunctional chelate of (90)Y and (177)Lu that can be applied for generation of versatile molecular targeted radiopharmaceuticals.
Project description:Two new bicyclic arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD) peptides, c(RGD-ACP-K) (1a) and c(RGD-ACH-K) (1b), incorporating the aminocyclopentane (ACP) and aminocyclohexane (ACH) carboxylic acids, respectively, were synthesized by grafting the aminocycloalkane carboxylic acids onto the tetra-peptide RGDK sequence. These peptides and their conjugates with DO3A (1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-1,4,7-trisacetic acid) (2a-b) exhibit high affinity toward U87MG glioblastoma cells. Their affinity is greater than that exhibited by c(RGDyK). Labeling these conjugates with radiometal (64)Cu resulted in high radiochemical yields (>97%) of the corresponding complexes, abbreviated as c(RGD-ACP-K)-DOTA-(64)Cu (3a) and c(RGD-ACH-K)-DOTA-(64)Cu (3b). Both 3a and 3b are stable for 24 h in human and mouse serums and show high tumor uptake, as observed by positron emission tomography (PET). Blocking experiments with 3a and 3b by preinjection of c(RGDyK) confirmed their target specificity and demonstrated their promise as PET radiotracers for imaging ???3-positive tumors.
Project description:Integrin ?v?3 and aminopeptidase N (APN, also known as CD13) are two important targets involved in the regulation of angiogenesis, tumor proliferation, invasion, and metastasis. In this study, we developed a heterodimeric tracer consisting of arginine-glycine-aspartic (RGD) and asparagine-glycine-arginine (NGR) peptides targeting ?v?3 and CD13, respectively, for PET imaging of breast cancer. The NGR peptide was first modified with N3-NOtB2 and then conjugated to BCN-PEG4-c(RGDyK) via copper-free click chemistry. The resulting precursor was purified and radiolabeled with gallium-68. Small-animal PET/CT imaging and post-imaging biodistribution studies were performed in mice bearing human breast cancer MCF-7, MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-468, and MX-1 xenografts and pulmonary metastases models. The expression levels of ?v?3 and CD13 in tumors were checked via immunochemical staining. The heterodimeric tracer was successfully synthesized and radiolabeled with gallium-68 at a molar activity of 45-100 MBq/nmol at the end of synthesis. It demonstrated high in vitro and in vivo stability. In static PET/CT imaging studies, the MCF-7 tumor could be clearly visualized and exhibited higher uptake at 30 min post injection of 68Ga-NGR-RGD than that of either 68Ga-RGD or 68Ga-NGR alone. High specificity was shown in blocking studies using Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD) and Asp-Gly-Arg (NGR) peptides. The MCF-7 tumor exhibited the highest uptake of 68Ga-NGR-RGD followed by MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-468, and MX-1 tumors. This was consistent with their expression levels of CD13 and ?v?3 as confirmed by western blot and immunohistochemical staining. Metastatic lesions in the lungs were clearly detectable on 68Ga-NGR-RGD PET/CT imaging in mouse models of pulmonary metastases. 68Ga-NGR-RGD, a CD13 and ?v?3 dual-receptor targeting tracer, showed higher binding avidities, targeting efficiency, and longer tumor retention time compared with monomeric 68Ga-NGR and 68Ga-RGD. Its promising in vivo performance makes it an ideal candidate for future clinical translation.
Project description:The fast kinetics and bioorthogonal nature of the tetrazine trans-cyclooctene (TCO) ligation makes it a unique tool for PET probe construction. In this study, we report the development of an (18)F-labeling system based on a CF3-substituted diphenyl-s-tetrazine derivative with the aim of maintaining high reactivity while increasing in vivo stability. c(RGDyK) was tagged by a CF3-substituted diphenyl-s-tetrazine derivative via EDC-mediated coupling. The resulting tetrazine-RGD conjugate was combined with a (19)F-labeled TCO derivative to give HPLC standards. The analogous (18)F-labeled TCO derivative was combined with the diphenyl-s-tetrazine-RGD at ?M concentration. The resulting tracer was subjected to in vivo metabolic stability assessment, and microPET studies in murine U87MG xenograft models. The diphenyl-s-tetrazine-RGD combines with an (18)F-labeled TCO in high yields (>97% decay-corrected on the basis of TCO) using only 4 equiv of tetrazine-RGD relative to the (18)F-labeled TCO (concentration calculated based on product's specific activity). The radiochemical purity of the (18)F-RGD peptides was >95% and the specific activity was 111 GBq/?mol. Noninvasive microPET experiments demonstrated that (18)F-RGD had integrin-specific tumor uptake in subcutaneous U87MG glioma. In vivo metabolic stability of (18)F-RGD in blood, urine, and major organs showed two major peaks: one corresponded to the Diels-Alder conjugate and the other was identified as the aromatized analog. A CF3-substituted diphenyl-s-tetrazine displays excellent speed and efficiency in (18)F-PET probe construction, providing nearly quantitative (18)F labeling within minutes at low micromolar concentrations. The resulting conjugates display improved in vivo metabolic stability relative to our previously described system.