Know thy tumour: Biomarkers to improve treatment of molecular radionuclide therapy.
O'Neill E., Cornelissen B.
Molecular radionuclide therapy (MRT) is an effective treatment for both localised and disseminated tumours. Biomarkers can be used to identify potential subtypes of tumours that are known to respond better to standard MRT protocols. These enrolment-based biomarkers can further be used to develop dose-response relationships using image-based dosimetry within these defined subtypes. However, the biological identity of the cancers treated with MRT are commonly not well-defined, particularly for neuroendocrine neoplasms. The biological heterogeneity of such cancers has hindered the establishment of dose-responses and minimum tumour dose thresholds. Biomarkers could also be used to determine normal tissue MRT dose limits and permit greater injected doses of MRT in patients. An alternative approach is to understand the repair capacity limits of tumours using radiobiology-based biomarkers within and outside patient cohorts currently treated with MRT. It is hoped that by knowing more about tumours and how they respond to MRT, biomarkers can provide needed dimensionality to image-based biodosimetry to improve MRT with optimized protocols and personalised therapies.