Title: The Imaging Biomarker Quantification and Standardization (IBQS) Core

Team members:

Kooresh Shoghi, Ph.D.
Monica Shokeen, Ph.D.
Yongjian Liu, Ph.D.
Timothy Whitehead, Ph.D.
Debbie Sultan
Lori Strong


The Imaging Biomarker Quantification and Standardization (IBQS) Core of the Center for Multiple Myeloma Nanotherpay (CMMN) is a central resource for Center projects to facilitate quantification and standardization of imaging biomarkers and pharmacokinetics of nanotherapeutic particles. With an end goal of translation of the nanotherapeutics being developed in Projects 1 and 2, and investigation of new methods to achieve curative outcome in Project 3, the IBQS Core will develop quantitative benchmarks for assessing response to therapy that transcend species and modalities. Broadly, the Core will develop high-throughput techniques for image processing, develop and implement quantitative imaging metrics to assess tumor progression and response to therapy, perform metabolism studies, and develop pharmacokinetic models of the imaging nanotherapeutics developed in the CMMN. In doing so, the Core will ensure quality control and consistency across all projects. This will minimize variability between projects that rely heavily on each other for consistent data and will enhance the overall capabilities of individual projects and their prospect for translation.

Primary Objective

The primary objective of the IBQS Core is: To facilitate the clinical translation and the impact of the nanotherapeutics developed in Projects 1-3 by standardizing and characterizing the utility of imaging biomarkers to assess response to therapy in preclinical models of multiple myeloma towards clinical utility.

Progress and Major Accomplishments

  • Optimized methods for high throughput image acquisition using the mouse hotel. This will facilitate imaging studies throughout Project 1-3.
  • Standardized 18FDG-PET metrics to assess tumor progression and treatment.
  • Verification of VLA-4 expression & targeting with 64Cu-LLP2A in preclinical models of multiple myeloma
  • Characterized the metabolic stability of 68Ga-LLP2A. Our results indicate that 68Ga-LLP2A accounts for 85-90% of radioactivity in blood at 1hr post-injection whereas 10-15% of radioactivity attributed to dissociated 68Ga-DOTA. These are encouraging results and support future translation of imaging the technology.