Nothing but NET: A Review of Norepinephrine Transporter Expression and Efficacy of 131I-mIBG Therapy

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Abstract

Neuroblastoma is unique amongst common pediatric cancers for its expression of the norepinephrine transporter (NET), enabling tumor-selective imaging and therapy with radioactive analogues of norepinephrine. The majority of neuroblastoma tumors are avid for 123I-metaiodobenzaguanidine (mIBG) on imaging, yet the therapeutic response to 131I-mIBG is only 30% in clinical trials, and off-target effects cause short- and long-term morbidity. We review the contemporary understanding of the tumor-selective uptake, retention, and efflux of meta-iodobenzylguanidine (mIBG) and strategies currently in development for improving its efficacy. Combination treatment strategies aimed at enhancing NET are likely necessary to reach the full potential of 131I-mIBG therapy. Pediatr Blood Cancer 2015;62:5–11 © 2014 The Authors. Pediatric Blood & Cancer published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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