Radioiodinated tracers for myocardial imaging

Padmakar V. Kulkarni, James R. Corbett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Recent advances in the efficient production of high purity radioiodine (123I) and new efficient radiolabeling techniques have allowed the development of new classes of cardiovascular radiopharmaceuticals. These include 123I-labeled fatty acids to assess myocardial metabolism, 123I-metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) for myocardial neuronal activity, labeled monoclonal antibodies for myocardial necrosis, and labeled lipoproteins for receptor concentration. 123I-labeled fatty acids and MIBG are under clinical investigation with encouraging results. 123I-and 111In-labeled fragments of monoclonal antibodies to myosin have been used for imaging myocardial necrosis in humans. The development of radiotracers for imaging of cholinergic and adrenergic receptors is still in the experimental stage. Recent advances in imaging instrumentation and radiopharmaceuticals have resulted in cardiac imaging applications beyond blood pool ventriculography, perfusion, and infarctavid imaging. Developments of radioiodine (123I)-labeled agents promise to play an important role in the assessment of myocardial metabolism, neuronal activity, and receptor concentration. The chemistry activity, and receptor concentration. The chemistry of iodine is well defined compared with that of 99mTc; therefore, iodine isotopes are well suited for labeling biologically important molecules. Among the iodine isotopes, 123I has nearly ideal nuclear properties for nuclear medical applications with a 13.3-hour half-life (T1/2) and 159 keV gamma emission (83%). Dispite the nearly ideal chemical and nuclear properties of 123I, the widespread application of 123I-based radiopharmaceuticals in clinical practice has been limited by high production costs (123I is produced in a cyclotron), relatively limited availability, and the presence of undesirable radionuclidic impurities (124I, T1/2=4.2 days; 125I, T1/2=60 days; 126I, T1/2=13.1 days). The relatively long T1/2 and beta particle emission can substantially increase the higher radiation burden to the patient. High energy gamma rays (>600 KeV) from these impurities can degrade images obtained using low energy collimators. Recent developments in production techniques have greatly reduced the levels of the undesirable radio-nuclides in 123I. Ready availability of pure 123I at modest cost, in concentrations suitable for the radiolabeling of a variety of useful biomolecules, should enhance the clinical applications of 123I-labeled compounds. Molecules labeled with 123I that are useful in cardiac imaging studies are fatty acid analogs, monoclonal antibodies, receptor binding agents, and norepinephrine analogs. This article will discuss developments in radioiodine (123I)-labeled radiotracers for mycordial imaging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-129
Number of pages11
JournalSeminars in Nuclear Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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