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Amyloid-Beta Radiotracer [18F]BF-227 Does Not Bind to Cytoplasmic Glial Inclusions of Postmortem Multiple System Atrophy Brain Tissue

The accumulation of aggregated alpha-synuclein (α-syn) in multiple brain regions is a neuropathological hallmark of synucleinopathies. Multiple system atrophy (MSA) is a synucleinopathy characterized by the predominant cerebral accumulation of aggregated α-syn as cytoplasmic glial inclusions (CGI). A premortem diagnosis tool would improve early diagnosis and help monitoring disease progression and therapeutic efficacy. One Positron Emission Tomography (PET) study suggested [11C]BF-227 as a promising radiotracer for monitoring intracellular α-syn deposition in MSA patients. We sought to confirm the binding of this radiotracer to α-syn using state-of-the-art autoradiography. Medulla sections were obtained from 9 MSA patients and 9 controls (London Neurodegenerative Diseases Brain Bank). [18F]BF-227, chemically identical to [11C]BF-227, was used at nanomolar concentrations to perform in vitro autoradiography assays. Autoradiograms were superimposed on fluorescent staining from the conformational anti-α-syn antibody 5G4 and quantified after immunofluorescence-driven definition of regions of interest. Autoradiography showed no specific signals in MSA patients in comparison to controls despite widespread pathology detected by immunofluorescence. Autoradiography does not support a significant binding of [18F]BF-227 to CGI at concentrations typically achieved in PET experiments.