The energy and oxygenation status of tumors from two murine sarcoma lines (KHT, RIF-1) and two human ovarian carcinoma xenograft lines (MLS, OWI) were assessed using three independent techniques. Tumor energy metabolism was investigated in vivo by 31P nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. After nuclear magnetic resonance measurements, tumors were frozen in liquid nitrogen to determine the tissue ATP concentration by imaging bioluminescence and to register the intracapillary oxyhemoglobin (HbO2) saturation using the cryospectrophotometric method.

There was a positive correlation between the nucleoside triphosphate β/total resonance ratio or a negative correlation between the Pi/total resonance ratio and the model ATP concentration obtained by bioluminescence, respectively. This was true for small tumors with no extended necrosis irrespective of tumor type. Moreover, a positive correlation was obtained between the HbO2 saturations and the ATP concentration measured with bioluminescence. The results demonstrate the potential of combined studies using noninvasive, integrating methods and high-resolution imaging techniques for characterizing the metabolic milieu in tumors.

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This work was supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (Mu 576/2–3), by the Bundesministerium für Forschung und Technologie (01ZO8801/0), and by grants from The National Cancer Institute (CA-20329 and CA-11198) and The Norwegian Cancer Society.

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