Feasibility of somatostatin receptor-targeted imaging for detection of myocardial inflammation: A pilot study

Academic Article


  • Background: Gallium-68 Dotatate binds preferentially to somatostatin receptor (sstr) subtype-2 (sstr-2) on inflammatory cells. We aimed at investigating the potential clinical use of sstr-targeted imaging for the detection of myocardial inflammation. Methods: Thirteen patients, with suspected cardiac sarcoidosis (CS) based on clinical history and myocardial uptake on recent fluorine-18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) PET, were enrolled to undergo Dotatate PET after FDG-PET (median time 37 days [IQR 25-55]). Additionally, we investigated ex-vivo the immunohistochemistry expression of sstr-2 in 3 explanted sarcoid hearts. Results: All FDG scans showed cardiac uptake (focal/multifocal = 6, focal on diffuse/heterogeneous = 7), and 46% (n = 6) extra-cardiac uptake (mediastinal/hilar). In comparison, Dotatate scans showed definite abnormal cardiac uptake (focal/multifocal) in 4 patients, probably abnormal (heterogenous/patchy) in 3, and negative uptake in 6 cases. Similarly, 6 patients had increased mediastinal/hilar Dotatate uptake. Overall concordance of FDG and Dotatate uptake was 54% in the heart and 100% for thoracic nodal activity. Quantitatively, FDG maximum standardized uptake value was 5.0 times [3.8-7.1] higher in the heart, but only 2.25 times [1.7-3.0; P =.019] higher in thoracic nodes relative to Dotatate. Ex-vivo, sstr-2 immunostaining was weakly seen within well-formed granulomas in all 3 examined sarcoid heart specimens with no significant staining of background myocardium or normal myocardium. Conclusion: Our preliminary data suggest that, compared to FDG imaging, somatostatin receptor-targeted imaging may be less sensitive for the detection of myocardial inflammation, but comparable for detecting extra-cardiac inflammation.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Bravo PE; Bajaj N; Padera RF; Morgan V; Hainer J; Bibbo CF; Harrington M; Park MA; Hyun H; Robertson M
  • Start Page

  • 1089
  • End Page

  • 1099
  • Volume

  • 28
  • Issue

  • 3