Nuclear medicine scan could identify who might benefit from aromatase inhibitor treatment

May 7, 2015

A new, noninvasive nuclear medicine test can be used to determine whether aromatase inhibitor treatment will be effective for specific cancer patients, according to a recent study reported in The Journal of Nuclear Medicine. The research shows that a PET scan with the ligand C-11-vorozole reliably detects aromatase in all body organs -- demonstrating the value of its future use to pre-determine the effectiveness of the treatment for breast, ovarian, endometrial and lung cancer patients, potentially reducing unnecessary treatment costs and adverse effects.

Aromatase inhibitors are drugs that work by blocking the aromatase enzyme, which turns the androgen hormone into cancer-stimulating estrogen. They are widely used in the adjuvant treatment of breast cancer and other endocrine conditions. However, no quantitative, noninvasive studies had been done of the distribution and regulation of aromatase in living humans.

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