Bone-seeking radiopharmaceuticals as targeted agents of osteosarcoma: Samarium-153- EDTMP and Radium-223

Peter M. Anderson, Vivek Subbiah, Eric Rohren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Osteosarcoma is a cancer characterized by formation of bone by malignant cells. Routine bone scan imaging with Tc-99m-MDP is done at diagnosis to evaluate primary tumor uptake and check for bone metastases. At time of relapse the Tc-99m-MDP bone scan also provides a specifi c means to assess formation of bone by malignant osteosarcoma cells and the potential for bone-seeking radiopharma-ceuticals to deliver radioactivity directly into osteoblastic osteosarcoma lesions. This chapter will review and compare a bone-seeking radiopharmaceutical that emits beta-particles, samarium-153-EDTMP, with an alpha-particle emitter, radium-223. The charged alpha particles from radium-223 have far more mass and energy than beta particles (electrons) from Sm-153-EDTMP. Because radium-223 has less marrow toxicity and more radiobiological effectiveness, especially if inside the bone forming cancer cell than samarium-153-EDTMP, radium-223 may have greater potential to become widely used against osteosarcoma as a targeted therapy. Radium-223 also has more potential to be used with chemotherapy against osteosar-coma and bone metastases. Because osteosarcoma makes bone and radium-223 acts like calcium, this radiopharmaceutical could possibly become a new targeted means to achieve safe and effective reduction of tumor burden as well as facilitate better surgery and/or radiotherapy for diffi cult to resect large, or metastatic tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-304
Number of pages14
JournalAdvances in experimental medicine and biology
StatePublished - 2014


  • Beta particle
  • Bone scan for screening
  • Double strand DNA breaks
  • Internal radiotherapy
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Radiobiological effectiveness (RBE)
  • Radium-223
  • Resistance is futile
  • Samarium-153
  •   Alpha particle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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