Quantification of brain μ-opioid receptors with [11C]carfentanil: Reference-tissue methods

Christopher J. Endres, Badreddine Bencherif, John Hilton, Igal Madar, J. James Frost

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


[11C]Carfentanil (CFN) is a μ-opioid agonist used for in vivo positron emission tomography (PET) studies of μ-opioid receptors. Previously, a tissue-ratio method was validated for the quantification of CFN binding. However, since that initial validation, several other blood independent (reference-tissue) methods have become available. To evaluate these methods, CFN PET studies with arterial blood sampling were acquired in six healthy male control subjects. Specific binding estimates obtained from reference-tissue methods were compared to those obtained with a more rigorous blood input modeling technique. It was determined that both a graphical method, and a simplified reference tissue model, were more accurate than the tissue-ratio method for quantification of CFN binding.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-186
Number of pages10
JournalNuclear Medicine and Biology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2003


  • Mu-opioid receptors
  • Opiates
  • Positron emission tomography
  • [C]carfentanil

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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