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As intra-arterial chemotherapy for liver metastases of colorectal origin becomes accepted, methods of further improving drug delivery to the tumour have been devised. Degradable microspheres have been shown to reduce regional blood flow by transient arteriolar capillary block, thereby improving uptake of a co-administered drug, when injected into the hepatic artery. In our study of five patients, we combined hepatic arterial perfusion scintigraphy (HAPS) and SPECT to assess the localization of approximately 1 X 10(5) labelled microspheres of human serum albumin (99Tcm MSA) in tumour. In addition, in three patients, we assessed the effect of an intra-arterial infusion of the vasoactive agent angiotension II during HAPS. Results were interpreted by comparing transaxial slices with corresponding slices of a tin colloid liver-spleen scan. Two of five patients showed good localization of 99Tcm MSA in tumour without an angiotensin II infusion. Of the three patients receiving angiotensin II, all showed good tumour targetting with the vasoconstrictor compared with only one of these three before its use. Thus, hepatic arterial infusion of angiotensin II greatly improves microsphere localization in tumour in some patients with colorectal liver metastases. This technique may be useful in the assessment of tumour targetting before and during locoregional therapy.

Original publication




Journal article


Nucl Med Commun

Publication Date





1025 - 1032


Angiotensin II, Colonic Neoplasms, Embolization, Therapeutic, Hepatic Artery, Humans, Liver Neoplasms, Microspheres, Technetium Tc 99m Aggregated Albumin, Tomography, Emission-Computed