Gallium-68 DOTATATE

Gallium-68 DOTATATE​ (or Ga-68 DOTATATE) is a PET radiotracer that is useful for evaluating primary and metastatic well-differentiated neuroendocrine tumors. It is a form of somatostatin-receptor (SSTR) functional imaging and most often combined with cross-sectional imaging in the form of PET-CT.

Gallium-68 DOTATATE is synthesized from three main components:

  1. gallium (Ga) radiotracer
  2. linked, via a chemical macrocyclic chelator, known as DOTA (or tetraxetan; IUPAC name: 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-tetraacetic acid)
  3. to the short-chain peptide Tyr3-octreotate (TATE)

Ga-68 DOTATATE​​ has shown improved accuracy for detection relative to indium-111 pentetreotide SPECT-CT 1​. It binds SSTR subtype 2 and binds 100 times more avidly than indium-111 pentetreotide 2.

There are other forms:

  • DOTATOC: DOTA-d-Phe1-Tyr3-octreotide
  • DOTANOC: DOTA-1-Nal3-octreotide

These have an affinity for different somatostatin receptors, SSTR subtypes 3 and 5 and SSTR subtype 5, respectively 3.

There is normal Ga-68 DOTATATE uptake in the pituitary gland, spleen, liver, adrenal glands, and urinary tract 4,5.

The salivary glands and thyroid show faint to mild homogeneous uptake 4,5.

Imaging technology

Article information

rID: 62034
System: Oncology
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Ga-68-DOTATATE
  • 68-Ga-DOTATATE

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1
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  • Case 2: physiological uptake at the uncinate process of pancreas
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