Balaji Krishnamachary1, Marie-France Penet1, Sridhar Nimmagadda1, Meiyappan Solaiyappan1, Dmitri Artemov1, Kristine Glunde1, Arvind P. Pathak1, Paul Winnard1, Venu Raman1, Martin Pomper1, Zaver M. Bhujwalla1
1JHU ICMIC Program, The Russell H. Morgan Department of Radiology and Radiological Science, The Jonhs Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
We previously observed an association between hypoxia, total choline, and increased expression of CD44, a marker associated with stem-like breast cancer cells. Here we have validated our observations that hypoxia is strongly associated with several stem-like breast cancer cell markers, and confirmed with imaging, that increased total choline and hypoxia are co-localized in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer xenografts. These data suggest that noninvasive imaging of hypoxia can identify regions most likely to contain stem-like breast cancer cells, and that hypoxic environments and choline metabolism may be targeted to reduce stem-like cell burden and minimize tumor recurrence.