Biomol Ther  
Imaging Cancer Metabolism
Milica Momcilovic and David B. Shackelford*
Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA, 90095, USA
Tel: +310-267-2725, Fax: +310-206-8622
Received: October 24, 2017; Revised: November 11, 2017; Accepted: November 13, 2017; Published online: December 7, 2017.
© The Korean Society of Applied Pharmacology. All rights reserved.

It is widely accepted that altered metabolism contributes to cancer growth and has been described as a hallmark of cancer. Our view and understanding of cancer metabolism has expanded at a rapid pace, however, there remains a need to study metabolic dependencies of human cancer in vivo. Recent studies have sought to utilize multi-modality imaging (MMI) techniques in order to build a more detailed and comprehensive understanding of cancer metabolism. MMI combines several in vivo techniques that can provide complementary information related to cancer metabolism. We describe several non-invasive imaging techniques that provide both anatomical and functional information related to tumor metabolism. These imaging modalities include: positron emission tomography (PET), computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) that uses hyperpolarized probes and optical imaging utilizing bioluminescence and quantification of light emitted. We describe how these imaging modalities can be combined with mass spectrometry and quantitative immunochemistry to obtain more complete picture of cancer metabolism. In vivo studies of tumor metabolism are emerging in the field and represent an important component to our understanding of how metabolism shapes and defines cancer initiation, progression and response to treatment. In this review we describe in vivo based studies of cancer metabolism that have taken advantage of MMI in both pre-clinical and clinical studies. MMI promises to advance our understanding of cancer metabolism in both basic research and clinical settings with the ultimate goal of improving detection, diagnosis and treatment of cancer patients.
Keywords: Tumor metabolism, Pet imaging, Mass spectrometry, Optical imaging

This Article