Pharmacology and Imaging of the Liver
Our research group studies the pharmacokinetics of hepatobiliary drugs including contrast agents and tracers used for liver imaging. Most of these compounds cross hepatocytes by membrane transporters. Liver disease can modify the function of these transporters. For example, hepatocellular carcinomas are better detected by liver imaging following the injection of hepatobiliary contrast agents such as Gd-EOB-DTPA (Primovist®) and Gd-BOPTA (MultiHance®). Tumour cells loss membrane transporters in comparison to surrounding liver tissue and contrast agents do not enter into tumours. Liver imaging is a new tool in pharmacology to estimate drug hepatocyte concentrations. Our projects combine pharmacology and liver imaging research topics in collaboration with Youssef Daali (Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, HUG), Sabine Schmidt (Radiology, CHUV, Lausanne), Christine Sempoux (Pathology, CHUV, Lausanne), Valérie Vilgrain and Bernard Van Beers (Radiology, CHU Beaujon, Clichy, France).
A collaborative project with the departments of Radiology in CHUV and CHU Beaujon measures the pharmacokinetics of Primovist® in normal human liver. Liver perfusion [A, ml/min/100 g]. Arterial perfusion [B, %]. Hepatocyte extraction of Primovist® [C, %]. Uptake rate of the contrast agent [D, ml/min/100g]. Parameters are available in all liver lobes. Values are color-coded with standard values besides each image.