The new radiopharmaceutical Ga-68-PSMA was administered today for the first time in the nuclear medicine of IRCCS Crob, while a second of the latest generation, the Ga-68-FAPI, will be available shortly. Ga-68-PSMA was administered this morning to two patients from outside the region aged between 55 and 60, under treatment at IRCCS Crob. It is a radiopharmaceutical consisting of the PSMA molecule, an overexpressed protein of the prostate specific antigen used for the diagnosis of prostate cancer now used for examination with PET-CT. The new radiopharmaceutical is added to PET with F-18-Choline and with Fluociclovina, in use for some time in Crob nuclear medicine directed by Dr. Giovanni Storto, and compared to this method it allows to obtain particularly detailed information on prostate cancer especially in patients with biochemical relapse of disease.
“PSMA is an antigen present in abundance on the surface of cancer cells, which, if labeled with Gallium-68, becomes an optimal marker for the study of prostate cancer through the PET method” explains Dr. Rosj Gallicchio nuclear doctor at the ‘Irccs Crob that continues “this radiopharmaceutical recognizes the small areas of the disease early and with great precision and therefore identifies both the possible local recurrence and all the possible localizations in patients with proven biochemical recovery of the disease both after radical prostatectomy and after radiotherapy with curative intent, and is also effective as a diagnostic tool in the staging of high-risk patients “.
The new radiopharmaceutical is prepared, through the use of a synthesis module, directly in the operating unit which has its own radiopharmacy, and is administered to the patient through a simple venous access in the forearm. Once the radiopharmaceutical enters circulation, it emits radiation that allows the nuclear doctor to follow its path through the organs and determine the possible presence of cancer cells. This radiopharmaceutical is completely free of side effects and represents an essential tool for urologists, but the real innovation lies in the possibility of using it not only as a diagnostic tool but also as a treatment tool.
“The nuclear medicine of Irccs Crob is the only one in Basilicata equipped with metabolic radiotherapy with inpatient bunker, representing in fact a regional and trans-regional reference center” underlines Dr. Rosj Gallicchio “and this allows to administer, in a short time, the therapy obtained from the molecule PSMA, through the link with another radionuclide Lu177, in patients with hormone-resistant prostate cancer and documented skeletal metastases “.
The Ga-68-FAPI tracer, on the other hand, will offer an opportunity for a precision medicine approach, being effective in the non-invasive identification of almost all malignant tumors of epithelial origin. This latest generation tracer will allow to overcome the diagnostic limits of the most commonly used PET tracer (F-18-FDG) especially for the diagnosis and staging of gynecological neoplasms, some types of gastrointestinal carcinomas, as well as breast, liver and pancreatic cancer.