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THE QUARTERLY JOURNAL OF NUCLEAR MEDICINE AND MOLECULAR IMAGING

Rivista di Medicina Nucleare e Imaging Molecolare


A Journal on Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
Affiliated to the Society of Radiopharmaceutical Sciences and to the International Research Group of Immunoscintigraphy
Indexed/Abstracted in: Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index (SciSearch), Scopus
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The Quarterly Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging 2018 March;62(1):56-77

DOI: 10.23736/S1824-4785.17.03052-7

Copyright © 2017 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

lingua: Inglese

In-vivo imaging of tumor-infiltrating immune cells: implications for cancer immunotherapy

Carolien ZEELEN 1, Carmen PAUS 1, Derk DRAPER 1, Sandra HESKAMP, Alberto SIGNORE 2, 3, Filippo GALLI 2, Cristoph M. GRIESSINGER 4, Erik H. AARNTZEN 1

1 Department of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, The Netherlands; 2 Department of Medical-Surgical Sciences and Translational Medicine, Sapienza University, Rome, Italy; 3 Department of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, Groningen University Medical Center, Groningen, The Netherlands; 4 Department of Preclinical Imaging and Radiopharmacy, Werner Siemens Imaging Center, Tuebingen, Germany


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Dynamic interactions between tumor cells and immune cells promote the initiation, progression, metastasis and therapy-resistance of cancer. With respect to immunotherapy, immune cell populations such as cytotoxic CD8+ T-cells, CD56+ NK cells and myeloid phagocytic cells play decisive roles. From an imaging perspective, the immune system displays unique challenges, which have implications for the design and performance of studies. The immune system comprises highly mobile cells that undergo distinct phases of development and activation. These cells circulate through several compartments during their active life span and accumulate in rather limited numbers in cancer lesion, where their effector phenotype further diversifies. Given these features, accurate evaluation of the tumor microenvironment and its cellular components during anti-cancer immunotherapy is challenging. In-vivo imaging currently offers quantitative and sensitive modalities that exploit long-lived tracers to interrogate, e.g. distinct immune cell populations, metabolic phenotypes, specific targets relevant for therapy or critical for their effector function. This review provides a comprehensive overview of current status for in-vivo imaging tumor-infiltrating immune cell populations, focusing on lymphocytes, NK cells and myeloid phagocytic cells, with emphasis on clinical translation.


KEY WORDS: Neoplasms - Molecular imaging - Lymphocytes - T-lymphocytes - Natural killer T-cells - Macrophages - Immunotherapy

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Publication History

Issue published online: January 25, 2018
Article first published online: November 30, 2017
Manuscript accepted: November 29, 2017
Manuscript received: November 15, 2017

Per citare questo articolo

Zeelen C, Paus C, Draper D, Heskamp S, Signore A, Galli F, et al. In-vivo imaging of tumor-infiltrating immune cells: implications for cancer immunotherapy. Q J Nucl Med Mol Imaging 2018;62:56-77. DOI: 10.23736/S1824-4785.17.03052-7

Corresponding author e-mail

erik.aarntzen@radboudumc.nl