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Suchorska, Bogdana; Albert, Nathalie L.; Bauer, Elena K.; Tonn, Jörg-Christian; Galldiks, Norbert (2018): The role of amino-acid PET in the light of the new WHO classification 2016 for brain tumors. In: Quarterly Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, Vol. 62, No. 3: pp. 267-271
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Since its introduction in 2016, the revision of the World Health Organization (WHO) classification of central nervous system tumors has already changed the diagnostic and therapeutic approach in glial tumors. Blurring the lines between entities formerly labelled as "high-grade" or "low-grade", molecular markers define distinct biological subtypes with different clinical course. This new classification raises the demand for non-invasive imaging methods focusing on depicting metabolic processes. We performed a review of current literature on the use of amino-acid PET (AA-PET) for obtaining diagnostic or prognostic information on glioma in the setting of the current WHO 2016 classification. So far, only a few studies have focused on combining molecular genetic information and metabolic imaging using AA-PET. The current review summarizes the information available on "molecular grading" as well as prognostic information obtained from AA-PET and delivers an insight into a possible interrelation between metabolic imaging and glioma genetics. Within the framework of molecular characterization of gliomas, metabolic imaging using AA-PET is a promising tool for non-invasive characterization of molecular features and to provide additional prognostic information. Further studies incorporating molecular and metabolic features are necessary to improve the explanatory power of AA-PET in glial tumors.