Imaging of fibrosis – New data on PDGFRβ PET tracer presented at EASL ILC™ 2022

Fibrosis is a global health problem and a leading cause of morbidity and mortality where limited or no therapeutic options are available. The research activity in this field is high with the aim to increase understanding of the underlying mechanisms and to develop targeted and effective medicines to improve the outcome for patients suffering from fibrotic disease.

One disease characterized by pathological formation of fibrosis is metabolic dysfunction-associated steatotic liver disease (MASLD; previously called non-alcoholic fatty liver disease or NAFLD) where the need is high to develop non-invasive methods to assess fibrosis to support the development of novel treatments.

At the EASL International Liver Congress™ 2022, colleagues from Uppsala University present promising data on the radiolabelling and evaluation of a platelet-derived growth factor receptor beta (PDGFRB) binding affibody, showing specific binding to hepatic fibrotic lesions. PDGFRB is a known biomarker of activated hepatic stellate cells and plays a key role in development of fibrosis. The radiolabelled molecule shows strong promise as a non-invasive tool for PET imaging of fibrosis in MASLD and could provide valuable insights in the search for new treatments for this disease.

Title: Imaging of fibrosis in metabolic associated liver disease by a radiolabeled affibody targeting PDGFRB
Abstract number: FRI162
Authors: Wegrzyniak O, Rokka J, Zhang B, Rosestedt M, Mitran B, Cheung P, Puuvuori E, Ingvast S, Ponten F, Frejd F, Korsgren O, Eriksson J, Eriksson O
Poster presented by Olivia Wegrzyniak at the EASL ILC™, Friday 24 June 2022

The need for new biomarkers of fibrosis
Current methods to assess fibrosis are either invasive or not sensitive enough to detect early fibrosis. There is a high need to develop non-invasive methods to detect, stage and study the molecular processes that drive the pathology of fibrosis and enable assessment of treatment effects in the search for novel antifibrotic drugs. PET tracers are emerging as important biomarkers supporting drug development, due to their ability in understanding both the drug and its target and provide important insights into human biology quantitatively at a molecular level.

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