The distribution of alternative agents for targeted radiotherapy within human neuroblastoma spheroids
Nerve Growth Factors
This study aims to select the radiopharmaceutical vehicle for targeted radiotherapy of neuroblastoma which is most likely to penetrate readily the centre of micrometastases in vivo. The human neuroblastoma cell line NB1-G, grown as multicellular spheroids, provided an in vitro model for micrometastases. The radiopharmaceuticals studied were the catecholamine analogue metaiodobenzyl guanidine (mIBG), a specific neuroectodermal monoclonal antibody (UJ13A) and beta nerve growth factor (beta NGF). Following incubation of each drug with neuroblastoma spheroids, autoradiographs of frozen sections were prepared to demonstrate their relative distributions. mIBG and beta NGF were found to penetrate the centre of spheroids readily although the concentration of mIBG greatly exceeded that of beta NGF. In contrast, UJ13A was only bound peripherally. We conclude that mIBG is the best available vehicle for targeted radiotherapy of neuroblastoma cells with active uptake mechanisms for catecholamines. It is suggested that radionuclides with a shorter range of emissions than 131I may be conjugated to benzyl guanidine to constitute more effective targeting agents with potentially less toxicity to adjacent normal tissues.