10B-editing 1H-detection and 19F MRI strategies to optimize boron neutron capture therapy

Silvia Capuani, Paola Porcari, Fabrizio Fasano, Renzo Campanella, Bruno Maraviglia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) is a binary radiation therapy used to treat malignant brain tumours. It is based on the nuclear reaction (10B + nth → [11B*] → α + 7Li + 2.79 MeV) that occurs when 10B captures a thermal neutron to yield α particles and recoiling 7Li nuclei, both responsible of tumour cells destruction by short range and high ionization energy release. The clinical success of the therapy depends on the selective accumulation of the 10B carriers in the tumour and on the high thermal neutron capture cross-section of 10B. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) methods provide the possibility of monitoring, through 10B nuclei, the metabolic and physiological processes suitable to optimize the BNCT procedure. In this study, spatial distribution mapping of borocaptate (BSH) and 4-borono-phenylalanine (BPA), the two boron carriers used in clinical trials, has been obtained. The BSH map in excised rat brain and the 19F-BPA image in vivo rat brain, representative of BPA spatial distribution, were reported. The BSH image was obtained by means of double-resonance 10B-editing 1H-detection sequence, named M-Bend, exploiting the J-coupling interaction between 10B and 1H nuclei. Conversely, the BPA map was obtained by 19F-BPA using 19F-MRI. Both images were obtained at 7 T, in C6 glioma-bearing rat brain. Our results demonstrate the powerful of non conventional MRI techniques to optimize the BNCT procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)987-993
Number of pages7
JournalMagnetic Resonance Imaging
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2008


  • B
  • F-MRI
  • BNCT
  • Glioma rat brain
  • J-coupled protons

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Structural Biology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Biomedical Engineering


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