Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center
2220 Pierce Ave.
Nashville, TN 37232
Though still in the clinical phase trial, Vanderbilt’s Neuroendocrine Center is a leader in innovative new diagnostic imaging tools that may dramatically improve the ability to locate and ultimately remove neuroendocrine tumors. The 68Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT scan is the next generation of radioactive imaging that offers a much higher resolution and sensitivity in locating tumors. Much like a magnet binds to metals, this radioactive tracer is injected into the blood stream where it attaches itself directly to the tumors, effectively shining a light on them. Although recently performed in Europe, this specialized scan had never before been performed in the United States, having been viewed as offering a limited benefit to a small number of cancer patients. The recent and dramatic rise in neuroendocrine cancers, however, led Vanderbilt to take a second look. In 2011, Vanderbilt became the first facility in the U.S. to receive FDA approval to study the effectiveness of the 68 Gallium PET/CT scan in diagnosing and treating neuroendocrine tumors.