Hooker Lab radiochemistry collaborations highlighted in C&E News

Check out the article written by Bethany Halford in C&E News about the uptick in radiochemistry method development featuring some of our own work with the Ritter and Groves Labs.


Nicole wins 2014 Meixner Fellowship from Autism 

Congratulations to Nicole!  For more about her award, check out this link.



fPET-FDG: A new dynamic PET imaging method.

We are super excited to announce the publication of our new method we call fPET.   In a single imaging session with FDG, we show you can improve the time resolution and extract more dynamic information.  The manuscript is now available on our publications page.  We show that we can get brain maps for glucose activation from multiple stimuli in a single imaging session.  Our work builds on the classic FDG mapping experiments of Fox et al.  



[11C]Martinostat patent officially licensed by Cambridge-based pharmaceutical company

Over the past few years we worked hard to identify an imaging agent for class-I histone deacetylases (HDAC).  We have succeeded in developing a PET imaging agent, [11C]Martinostat, that can be used for imaging HDAC in the brain and major peripheral organs.  We are happy to announce that we now have non-exclusively licensed this technology to a Cambridge-based pharmaceutical company. Keep an eye out for more news to come about the progression of [11C]Martinostat to human brain imaging in late summer.



Image-Guided Drug Design (Highlight in C&E News)

C&E News highlighted as a 'Science Concentrate' our work recently published in ACS Chemical Neuroscience. 

"To treat brain disorders such as schizophrenia, not only do drugs need to be potent, but they also need to slip past the defenses of the blood-brain barrier to reach their targets. Looking for ways to fill this tall order, a research team led by Jacob M. Hooker of Harvard Medical School and Sung Won Kim of NIH’s National Institute on Alcohol Abuse & Alcoholismhas developed a drug design strategy that combines brain imaging and lab assays (ACS Chem. Neurosci. 2014, DOI: 10.1021/cn500021p). The scientists began with a promising anticancer compound, MS-275, that blocks the enzyme histone deacetylase (HDAC). “It had been reported that it was a long-lasting inhibitor that gets into the brain,” Hooker tells C&EN. But when the team placed a radiolabel on the molecule and used positron emission tomography (PET) to image its uptake in the brains of baboons, they were disappointed. Undeterred, the researchers modified the compound, ran a few new versions of it through an assay to check for HDAC activity, and ran the PET scans again. After a few more rounds, the researchers hit upon a series of HDAC inhibitors capable of penetrating the brain. According to Hooker, the strategy offers a way “to optimize a series of candidates for brain penetration.” -Lauren K. Wolf