Kinetic isotope effects and synthetic strategies for deuterated carbon-11 and fluorine-18 labelled PET radiopharmaceuticals

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The deuterium labelling of pharmaceuticals is a useful strategy for altering pharmacokinetic properties, particularly for improving metabolic resistance. The pharmacological effects of such metabolites are often assumed to be negligible during standard drug discovery and are factored in later at the clinical phases of development, where the risks and benefits of the treatment and side-effects can be wholly assessed. This paradigm does not translate to the discovery of radiopharmaceuticals, however, as the confounding effects of radiometabolites can inevitably show in preliminary positron emission tomography (PET) scans and thus complicate interpretation. Consequently, the formation of radiometabolites is crucial to take into consideration, compared to non-radioactive metabolites, and the application of deuterium labelling is a particularly attractive approach to minimise radiometabolite formation. Herein, we provide a comprehensive overview of the deuterated carbon-11 and fluorine-18 radiopharmaceuticals employed in PET imaging experiments. Specifically, we explore six categories of deuterated radiopharmaceuticals used to investigate the activities of monoamine oxygenase (MAO), choline, translocator protein (TSPO), vesicular monoamine transporter 2 (VMAT2), neurotransmission and the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease; from which we derive four prominent deuteration strategies giving rise to a kinetic isotope effect (KIE) for reducing the rate of metabolism. Synthetic approaches for over thirty of these deuterated radiopharmaceuticals are discussed from the perspective of deuterium and radioisotope incorporation, alongside an evaluation of the deuterium labelling and radiolabelling efficacies across these independent studies. Clinical and manufacturing implications are also discussed to provide a more comprehensive overview of how deuterated radiopharmaceuticals may be introduced to routine practice. © 2021 Published by Elsevier Inc.
Deuterium, Fluorine 18, Carbon 11, Radionuclide kinetics, Positron computed tomography, Radiopharmaceuticals
Klenner, M. A., Pascali, G., Fraser, B. H., & Darwish, T. A. (2021). Kinetic isotope effects and synthetic strategies for deuterated carbon-11 and fluorine-18 labelled PET radiopharmaceuticals. Nuclear Medicine and Biology, 96–97,112-147. doi:10.1016/j.nucmedbio.2021.03.011