Tau PET imaging using the tau specific PET tracer [18F]GTP1 has been and is part of therapeutic trials in Alzheimer's disease to monitor the accumulation of tau aggregates in the brain. Herein, we examined the metabolic processes of GTP1 and assessed the influence of smoking on its metabolism through in vitro assays. The tracer metabolic profile was assessed by incubating GTP1 with human liver microsomes (HLM) and human hepatocytes. Since smoking strongly stimulates the CYP1A2 enzyme activity, we incubated GTP1 with recombinant CYP1A2 to evaluate the role of the enzyme in tracer metabolism. It was found that GTP1 could form up to eleven oxidative metabolites with higher polarity than the parent. Only a small amount (2.6 % at 60 min) of a defluorinated metabolite was detected in HLM and human hepatocytes incubations highlighting the stability of GTP1 with respect to enzymatic defluorination. Moreover, the major GTP1 metabolites were not the product of CYP1A2 activity suggesting that smoking may not impact in vivo tracer metabolism and subsequently GTP1 brain kinetics.

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