Quantitative evaluation of radiolabeled Prostate-Specific Membrane Antigen (PSMA) PET scans may be used to monitor treatment response in patients with prostate cancer (PCa). To interpret longitudinal differences in PSMA uptake, the intrinsic variability of tracer uptake in PCa lesions needs to be defined. The aim of this study was to investigate the repeatability of quantitative 18F-DCFPyL (a second generation 18F-PSMA-ligand) PET/CT measurements in patients with PCa. Methods: Twelve patients with metastatic PCa were prospectively included, of which 2 were excluded from final analyses. Patients received two whole-body 18F-DCFPyL PET/CT scans (median dose 317 MBq; uptake time 120 min), within median 4 days (range 1-11 days). After semi-automatic (isocontour-based) tumor delineation, the following lesion-based metrics were derived: Tumor-to-Blood ratio (TBRmean, TBRpeak, and TBRmax), Standardized Uptake Value (SUVmean, SUVpeak, SUVmax, normalized to bodyweight), tumor volume, and total lesion tracer uptake (TLU). Additionally, patient-based Total Tumor Volume (sum of PSMA-positive tumor volumes; TTV) and Total Tumor Burden (sum of all lesion TLUs; TTB) were derived. Repeatability was analyzed using repeatability coefficients (RC) and intra-class correlations (ICC). Additionally, the effect of point spread function (PSF) image reconstruction on the repeatability of uptake metrics was evaluated. Results: In total, 36 18F-DCFPyL PET positive lesions were analyzed (up to 5 lesions per patient). RCs of TBRmean, TBRpeak, and TBRmax were 31.8%, 31.7%, and 37.3%, respectively. For SUVmean, SUVpeak, SUVmax the RCs were 24.4%, 25.3% and 31.0%, respectively. All ICC were ≥0.97. Tumor volume delineations were well repeatable, with RC 28.1% for individual lesion volumes and RC 17.0% for TTV. TTB had a RC of 23.2% and 33.4%, when based on SUVmean and TBRmean, respectively. Small lesions (<4.2mL) had worse repeatability for volume measurements. The repeatability of SUVpeak, TLU, and all patient-level metrics were not affected by PSF-reconstruction. Conclusion:18F-DCFPyL uptake measurements are well repeatable and can be used for clinical validation in future treatment response assessment studies. Patient-based TTV may be preferred for multicenter studies since its repeatability was both high and robust to different image reconstructions.
Journal of nuclear medicine : official publication, Society of Nuclear Medicine. 2020 Jan 10 [Epub ahead of print]
Bernard H E Jansen, Matthijs C F Cysouw, Andre N Vis, Reindert J A van Moorselaar, Jens Voortman, Yves J L Bodar, Patrick R Schober, N Harry Hendrikse, Otto S Hoekstra, Ronald Boellaard, Daniela E Oprea-Lager
Amsterdam University Medical Centers, VU University, Netherlands.