Several authors have investigated 6-[18F]fluoro-L-dopa (F-18-DOPA) in oncological patients to increase the specificity of PET. Dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) has the potential to be used as a precursor of melanin synthesis. Ishiwata et al. (43) assessed F-18-DOPA uptake in mice bearing B16 melanomas and found that tracer uptake was correlated with melanogenesis. However, it is likely that F-18-DOPA primarily provides information about the transport of the tracer, because the F-18 label is removed after the first metabolic step when DOPA is labeled in the sixth-position (44). Perfusion, FDG, and F-18-DOPA kinetics were compared in 11 patients with metastatic melanoma by Dimitrakopoulou-Strauss et al. (44). Generally FDG uptake was 1.5-fold higher than the F-18-DOPA uptake in 18 of 22 metastases. The authors report that the F-18-DOPA uptake was not perfusion dependent and provided different information as compared with FDG. Jacob et al. (44) used F-18-DOPA and FDG in four patients with small cell carcinoma and noted a lower uptake of F-18-DOPA as compared to FDG. Besides malignant melanoma, F-18-DOPA does accumulate in endocrine tumors (Fig. 11). On the basis of the current literature data, F-18-DOPA seems to be a promising tracer for PET imaging in patients
with malignant melanoma and endocrine tumors, additional to FDG. Especially in patients following chemotherapeutic treatment, F-18-DOPA can provide additional information as compared to FDG, because FDG uptake can be low in these patients.
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Complete Guide to Preventing Skin Cancer. We all know enough to fear the name, just as we do the words tumor and malignant. But apart from that, most of us know very little at all about cancer, especially skin cancer in itself. If I were to ask you to tell me about skin cancer right now, what would you say? Apart from the fact that its a cancer on the skin, that is.