Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Vol.103, No.3, 1311-1324, 2019
Evaluating the utility of human glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor gene as a novel radionuclide reporter gene: a promising molecular imaging tool
Radiolabelled ligands of glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor (GLP-1R) have been used to image the GLP-1R-expressing tissues (e.g., islets and insulinoma). Here, we introduced human glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor (hglp-1r) gene as a novel radionuclide reporter gene to broaden its applications in molecular imaging in vivo. Transient and stable baculoviral vectors (BV) were re-constructed and used to transfer the hglp-1r gene or enhanced green fluorescent protein (egfp) reporter gene into the stem cells or tumor cells. Cell proliferation assay and flow cytometry analysis demonstrated that BV-mediated reporter gene transferring and expression was biosafe and highly efficient. The BV-mediated exogenous hGLP-1R in target cells showed same ligand-receptor binding characteristics compared with its counterpart in insulinoma cells. Furthermore, the ligand-receptor binding assay showed a high affinity (IC50=0.3708nM) and robust correlation (R-2=0.9264) between the fluorescein-tagged or radiolabeled ligand probes and exogenous hGLP-1R in target cells. The target cells transferred with BV-mediated hGLP-1R could be clearly visualized in nude mice by micro-PET, which was capable of the purposes of short-term tracking transplanted stem cells or long-term monitoring tumor formation. Then, the image-based analysis and bio-distribution analysis quantitatively confirmed high target-to-background ratio of hGLP-1R-expressing cells. This study also investigated the endogenous GLP-1R-expressing organs/tissues in nude mice in the hGLP-1R radionuclide reporter gene imaging. Summarily, we evaluated the utility of hglp-1r gene as a novel radionuclide reporter gene, and demonstrated that it was a favorable and promising candidate of molecular imaging tool, which would expand the spectrum of radionuclide reporter gene imaging systems.