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A paradigm shift is underway in cancer diagnosis and therapy using radioactivity-based agents called radiopharmaceuticals. In the new strategy, diagnostic imaging measures the tumor uptake of radioactive agent "X" in a patient's specific cancer, and if uptake metrics are realized, the patient can be selected for therapy with radioactive agent "Y". The X and Y represent different radioisotopes that are optimized for each application. X-Y pairs are known as radiotheranostics, with the currently approved route of therapy being intravenous administration. The field is now evaluating the potential of intra-arterial dosing of radiotheranostics. In this manner, a higher initial concentration can be achieved at the cancer site, which could potentially enhance tumor-to-background targeting and lead to improved imaging and therapy. Numerous clinical trials are underway to evaluate these new therapeutic approaches that can be performed via interventional radiology. Of further interest is changing the therapeutic radioisotope that provides radiation therapy by β- emission to radioisotopes that also decay by α-particle emissions. Alpha (α)-particle emissions provide high energy transfer to the tumors and have distinct advantages. This review discusses the current landscape of intra-arterially delivered radiopharmaceuticals and the future of α-particle therapy with short-lived radioisotopes.

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Humans; United States; Patient Safety; Dissent and Disputes; Radiologists

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