To develop novel positron emission tomography (PET) agents for visualization and therapy monitoring of bacterial infections.
It is known that maltose and maltodextrins are energy sources for bacteria. Hence, 18F-labelled maltose derivatives could be a valuable tool for imaging bacterial infections. We have developed methods to synthesize 4-O-(α-D-glucopyranosyl)-6-deoxy-6-[18F]fluoro-D-glucopyranoside (6-[18F]fluoromaltose) and 4-O-(α-D-glucopyranosyl)-1-deoxy-1-[18F]fluoro-D-glucopyranoside (1-[18F]fluoromaltose) as bacterial infection PET imaging agents. 6-[18F]fluoromaltose was prepared from precursor 1,2,3-tri-O-acetyl-4-O-(2′,3′,-di-O-acetyl-4′,6′-benzylidene-α-D-glucopyranosyl)-6-deoxy-6-nosyl-D-glucopranoside (5). The synthesis involved the radio-fluorination of 5 followed by acidic and basic hydrolysis to give 6-[18F]fluoromaltose. In an analogous procedure, 1-[18F]fluoromaltose was synthesized from 2,3, 6-tri-O-acetyl-4-O-(2′,3′,4′,6-tetra-O-acetyl-α-D-glucopyranosyl)-1-deoxy-1-O-triflyl-D-glucopranoside (9). Stability of 6-[18F]fluoromaltose in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) and human and mouse serum at 37 °C was determined. Escherichia coli uptake of 6-[18F]fluoromaltose was examined.
A reliable synthesis of 1- and 6-[18F]fluoromaltose has been accomplished with 4–6 and 5–8 % radiochemical yields, respectively (decay-corrected with 95 % radiochemical purity). 6-[18F]fluoromaltose was sufficiently stable over the time span needed for PET studies (∼96 % intact compound after 1-h and ∼65 % after 2-h incubation in serum). Bacterial uptake experiments indicated that E. coli transports 6-[18F]fluoromaltose. Competition assays showed that the uptake of 6-[18F]fluoromaltose was completely blocked by co-incubation with 1 mM of the natural substrate maltose.
We have successfully synthesized 1- and 6-[18F]fluoromaltose via direct fluorination of appropriate protected maltose precursors. Bacterial uptake experiments in E. coli and stability studies suggest a possible application of 6-[18F]fluoromaltose as a new PET imaging agent for visualization and monitoring of bacterial infections.
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This work was supported, in part, by NCI In vivo Cellular Molecular Imaging Center (ICMIC) grant P50 CA114747 (SSG). We also thank the cyclotron facility at Stanford for [18F]fluoride production and modification of a GE TRACERlab FX-FN synthetic module for radiosynthesis.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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Namavari, M., Gowrishankar, G., Hoehne, A. et al. Synthesis of [18F]-labelled Maltose Derivatives as PET Tracers for Imaging Bacterial Infection. Mol Imaging Biol 17, 168–176 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11307-014-0793-5
- Bacterial infection
- Positron emission tomography