The Effects of an Albumin Binding Moiety on the Targeting and Pharmacokinetics of an Integrin αvβ6-Selective Peptide Labeled with Aluminum [18F]Fluoride

Sven H. Hausner, Nadine Bauer, Ryan A. Davis, Tanushree Ganguly, Sarah Y.C. Tang, Julie L. Sutcliffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Purpose: The αvβ6-BP peptide selectively targets the integrin αvβ6, a cell surface receptor recognized as a prognostic indicator for several challenging malignancies. Given that the 4-[18F]fluorobenzoyl (FBA)-labeled peptide is a promising PET imaging agent, radiolabeling via aluminum [18F]fluoride chelation and introduction of an albumin binding moiety (ABM) have the potential to considerably simplify radiochemistry and improve the pharmacokinetics by increasing biological half-life. Procedures: The peptides NOTA-αvβ6-BP (1) and NOTA-K(ABM)-αvβ6-BP (2) were synthesized on solid phase, radiolabeled with aluminum [18F]fluoride, and evaluated in vitro (integrin ELISA, albumin binding, cell studies) and in vivo in mouse models bearing paired DX3puroβ6 [αvβ6(+)]/DX3puro [αvβ6(−)], and for [18F]AlF 2, BxPC-3 [αvβ6(+)] cell xenografts (PET imaging, biodistribution). Results: The peptides were radiolabeled in 23.0 ± 5.7 % and 22.1 ± 4.4 % decay-corrected radiochemical yield, respectively, for [18F]AlF 1 and [18F]AlF 2. Both demonstrated excellent affinity and selectivity for integrin αvβ6 by ELISA (IC50vβ6) = 3–7 nM vs IC50vβ3) > 10 μM) and in cell binding studies (51.0 ± 0.7 % and 47.2 ± 0.7 % of total radioactivity bound to DX3puroβ6 cells at 1 h, respectively, vs. ≤ 1.2 % to DX3puro for both compounds). The radiotracer [18F]AlF 1 bound to human serum at 16.3 ± 1.9 %, compared to 67.5 ± 1.0 % for the ABM-containing [18F]AlF 2. In vivo studies confirmed the effect of the ABM on blood circulation (≤ 0.1 % ID/g remaining in blood for [18F]AlF 1 as soon as 1 h p.i. vs. > 2 % ID/g for [18F]AlF 2 at 6 h p.i.) and higher αvβ6(+) tumor uptake (4 h: DX3puroβ6; [18F]AlF 1: 3.0 ± 0.7 % ID/g, [18F]AlF 2: 7.2 ± 0.7 % ID/g; BxPC-3; [18F]AlF 2: 10.2 ± 0.1 % ID/g). Conclusion: Both compounds were prepared using standard chemistries; affinity and selectivity for integrin αvβ6 in vitro remained unaffected by the albumin binding moiety. In vivo, the albumin binding moiety resulted in prolonged circulation and higher αvβ6-targeted uptake.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalMolecular Imaging and Biology
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020


  • Albumin
  • Albumin binding moiety
  • Aluminum [F]fluoride
  • Blood circulation
  • Integrin αβ
  • Peptide
  • PET imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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