Is early sestamibi imaging in head and neck cancer affected by MDR status, p53 expression, or cell proliferation?
Leitha T1, Glaser C, Lang S.
A consensus has emerged that early imaging (within 20 min post-injection [p.i.] of sestamibi) has the highest diagnostic yield. Tc-99m-sestamibi uptake has been associated with P-glycoprotein-mediated multi-drug resistance (MDR), tumor vascularization, invasiveness, and cell proliferation. The aim of this study was to assess whether these parameters affect tumor uptake in current imaging protocols. Twenty-three patients with squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the mouth floor who were scheduled for surgery were imaged 5 min. p.i. with a triple-head gamma camera (360 degrees, 3 degrees/step SPECT, UHRPAR collimators). Tumor:nontumor tissue (TBR), tumor:gingiva (TGR), tumor:salivary gland (TSR), and tumor:nuchal muscle ratios (TNR) were calculated based on the cts/pix values of ROIs in the axial slices. The expression of the MDR gene was determined histochemically from biopsies. Cell proliferation was quantitated by the histochemical analysis of the Ki-67 protein (Ki-67 index); additionally, the p53 tumor suppressor gene (p53 index), a posttranslational stabilizer of the cell cycle at the G1 stage, was assessed. No significant differences were found for the uptake indices between MDR+ and MDR- tumors. Moreover, no significant correlation between sestamibi uptake and the Ki-67 and p53 indices could be demonstrated. The diagnostic information content of currently applied imaging protocols for sestamibi in SCC of the mouth floor is not affected by tumor-specific properties