Molecular Imaging and New Frontiers in Radiology
- Theranostics is a portmanteau combining the terms ‘therapy’ and ‘diagnostic’ and, in the context of this review, refers to the application of radiolabeled ligands for imaging and radionuclide therapy. The general idea is to visualize a treatable target and then deliver therapeutic dosages of internal radiation via radioactive compounds in both steps. Following the concept of precision oncology, theranostic applications aim to select suitable patients likely to benefit from subsequent radioligand therapy.
- Molecular imaging techniques have rapidly progressed over recent decades providing unprecedented in vivo characterization of metabolic pathways and molecular biomarkers. Many of these new techniques have been successfully applied in the field of neuro-oncological imaging to probe tumor biology. Targeting specific signaling or metabolic pathways could help to address several unmet clinical needs that hamper the management of patients with brain tumors. This review aims to provide an overview of the recent advances in brain tumor imaging using molecular targeting with positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance imaging, as well as the role in patient management and possible therapeutic implications.