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Gallium-68 DOTATATE (or Ga-68 DOTATATE) is a PET radiotracer that is a form of somatostatin-receptor (SSTR) functional imaging. It is most commonly used for evaluating primary and metastatic well-differentiated neuroendocrine tumors. There are also emerging uses for evaluating other somatostatin-expressing conditions, such as meningiomas or sarcoidosis 5.
Gallium-68 DOTATATE is synthesized from three main components:
gallium (Ga) radiotracer
linked, via a chemical macrocyclic chelator, known as DOTA (or tetraxetan; IUPAC name: 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-tetraacetic acid)
to the short-chain peptide Tyr3-octreotate (TATE)
There are other forms:
These have an affinity for different somatostatin receptors, SSTR subtypes 3 and 5 and SSTR subtype 5, respectively 3.
Physiological high-intensity uptake is typically seen in the spleen 4,5.
The liver, uncinate process of the pancreas, pituitary gland, adrenal glands and urinary tract typically demonstrates moderate-intensity uptake 4,5.
The salivary and thyroid glands typically only show mild uptake 4,5.
In contrast to FDG PET, there is little tracer activity within the brain.
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