Synthesis and preliminary evaluation of 18F- or 11C-labeled bicyclic nucleoside analogues as potential probes for imaging varicella-zoster virus thymidine kinase gene expression using positron emission tomography
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry vol:50 issue:5 pages:1041-1049
Two radiolabeled bicyclic nucleoside analogues (BCNAs) were synthesized, namely 3-(2'-deoxy-beta-d-ribofuranosyl)-6-(3-[18F]fluoroethoxyphenyl)-2,3-dihydrofuro[2,3-d]pyrimidin-2-one ([18F]-2) and 3-(2'-deoxy-beta-d-ribofuranosyl)-6-(3-[11C]methoxyphenyl)-2,3-dihydrofuro[2,3-d]pyrimidin-2-one ([11C]-3), and evaluated as PET reporter probes for varicella-zoster virus thymidine kinase (VZV-tk) gene expression imaging in brain. [18F]-2 and [11C]-3 were synthesized starting from phenol precursor 1. The phenol precursor 1 was converted to stable as well as to radiolabeled compounds 2 and 3 using (19/18)FCH(2)CH(2)Br or (12/11)CH(3)I as alkylating agent. In vitro evaluation of [18F]-2 and [11C]-3 in 293T cells showed a 4.5 and 53-fold higher uptake, respectively, into VZV-tk gene-transduced cells compared to control cells. However, biodistribution studies in mice demonstrated low uptake of these tracers in the brain. RP-HPLC analysis of plasma and urine samples of mice injected with [11C]-3 revealed that this tracer is very stable in vivo. These data warrant further evaluation of these tracers as noninvasive imaging agents for VZV infection and VZV-tk reporter gene expression in vivo.