Vanderbilt University
Institute of Imaging Science

Charles Manning, Ph.D.

Director, Vanderbilt Center for Molecular Probes and Molecular Imaging Research
Professor of Radiology, Chemistry, Biomedical Engineering, Neurosurgery, and Chemical and Physical Biology
Vanderbilt Ingram Professor of Cancer Research and VICC Director of Cancer Imaging Research

Contact Information
(615) 322-3793


My interests are Molecular Imaging Probe Development, PET, Radiochemistry, Medicinal Chemistry, Drug Discovery, and HTS. Our lab develops new imaging biomarkers of cancer and other human diseases.


The major objective of our laboratory is to develop new molecular imaging tracers for detection by positron emission tomography (PET) for non-invasive visualization and quantification of specific molecular events in cancer cells. Among clinical modalities available for cancer imaging, the sensitivity and quantitative nature of PET, coupled with the ability to produce biologically active tracers bearing positron-emitting isotopes, renders PET imaging uniquely capable of detecting tumors and profiling their molecular features. Despite this potential, a lack of specific, and biologically validated tracers able to provide detailed molecular information about individual tumors limits the breadth of biological questions addressable with PET. By far, the most widely used PET tracer in oncology is 2-deoxy-2-(18F)fluoro-D-glucose (FDG), which accumulates in tissues as a function of glucose uptake. Many tumors utilize glycolysis to at least partially fuel their growth, and consequently, FDG PET has become a mainstream tool for cancer detection and assessment. Importantly, however, FDG PET has several key limitations. Efficacy gaps of FDG PET include cancers that are among the most challenging to unambiguously diagnose and clinically manage, such as tumors of the pancreas, lung, and brain. Innovative tracers capable of addressing these shortfalls are essential for advancing the role of PET imaging in clinical oncology; projects in our lab focus on their development and translation.


Eliot T. McKinley, R. Adam Smith, Jarred P. Tanksley, Mary Kay Washington, Ronald Walker, Robert J. Coffey, H. Charles Manning. "[18F]FLT PET to predict pharmacodynamic and clinical response to cetuximab therapy in Ménétrier"s disease. Ann Nucl Med. 2012 Nov;26(9):757-63. PMCID: PMC3543701

Dewei Tang, Matthew R. Hight, Eliot T. McKinley, Allie Fu, Jason R. Buck, R. Adam Smith, Mohammed Noor Tantawy, Todd E. Peterson, Daniel Colvin, M. Sib Ansari, Mike Nickels, and H. Charles Manning. "Quantitative preclinical imaging of TSPO expression in glioma using N,N-diethyl-2-(2-(4-(2-(18F)-fluoroethoxy)phenyl)-5,7-dimethylpyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidin-3-yl)acetamide." J Nucl Med 2012; 53 (2): 287-294. PMCID: PMC3391587

Jason R. Buck, Eliot T. McKinley, Matthew R. Hight, Allie Fu, Dewei Tang, R. Adam Smith, Mohammed Noor Tantawy, Todd E. Peterson, Daniel Colvin, M. Sib Ansari, Ronald M. Baldwin, Ping Zhao, Saffet Guleryuz, and H. Charles Manning. "Quantitative, preclinical PET imaging of TSPO expression in glioma using [18F]PBR06." J Nucl Med. 2011; 52:107-114. PMCID: PMC3027353

Eliot McKinley, Joseph E. Bugaj, Ping Zhao, Saffet Guleryuz, Christine Mantis, Prafulla C. Gokhale, Robert Wild and H. Charles Manning. "18FDG-PET predicts pharmacodynamic response to OSI-906, a dual IGF-1R/IR inhibitor, in preclinical mouse models of lung cancer." Clin Cancer Res. (2011) 17; 3332. PMCID: PMC3122480

Garrett JT, Olivares MG, Rinehart C, Granja-Ingram NM, Sánchez V, Chakrabarty A, Davé B, Cook RS, Pao W, McKinely ET, Manning HC, Chang JC, Arteaga CL. "Transcriptional and post-translational upregulation of HER3 (ErbB3) compensates for inhibition of the HER2 tyrosine kinase". Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. (2011) 108: 5021-5026. PMCID: PMC3064360