Lower 68Ga-DOTATOC uptake in nonfunctioning pituitary neuroendocrine tumours compared to normal pituitary gland—A proof-of-concept study

Axel Tjörnstrand, Olivera Casar-Borota, Kerstin Heurling, Michael Schöll, Peter Gjertsson, Jakob Himmelman, Oleksiy Itsenko, Oskar Ragnarsson, Helena Filipsson Nyström

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7 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

Objectives: 68Ga-DOTATOC PET targets somatostatin receptors (SSTRs) and is well established for the detection of SSTR-expressing tumors, such as gastrointestinal neuroendocrine tumors. Pituitary adenomas, recently designated as pituitary neuroendocrine tumors (PitNETs), also express SSTRs, but there has been no previous evaluations of 68Ga-DOTATOC PET in PitNET patients. The aim of this pilot study was to evaluate the diagnostic properties of 68Ga-DOTATOC PET in the most common PitNET, ie non-functioning (NF)-PitNET. Design/Patients: NF-PitNET patients (n = 9) and controls (n = 13) were examined preoperatively with 68Ga-DOTATOC PET for 45 min after tracer injection in dynamic list mode. Tumor specimens were collected during surgery in patients. MRI and PET images were co-registered using PMOD software. The maximum standard uptake value (SUVmax) was analyzed in manually outlined regions of interest (ROI) around the tumor in patients and around the pituitary gland in controls. Immunohistochemical analyses were conducted on tumor specimens for assessment of tumor cell type and SSTR expression. Results: Median SUVmax (IQR) was lower in patients than in controls (3.9 [3.4-8.5] vs 14.1 [12.5-15.9]; P <.01]. In ROC analysis, the area under the curve was 0.87 (P <.01) for SUVmax, with 78% sensitivity and 92% specificity. Immunohistochemical analysis showed NF-PitNETs were of gonadotroph (n = 7) and corticotroph (n = 2) origin. SSTR expression was high for SSTR3, low-to-moderate for SSTR2, and low for SSTR1 and SSTR5. Conclusions: This proof-of-concept study shows that 68Ga-DOTATOC PET can be used to differentiate between normal pituitary tissue and NF-PitNET.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-231
Number of pages10
JournalClinical Endocrinology
Volume92
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Cancer and Oncology

Keywords

  • DOTATOC PET
  • nonfunctioning pituitary adenoma
  • pituitary adenoma
  • pituitary neuroendocrine tumour localization
  • somatostatin receptor imaging

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