[en] 9-[(3-[18F]Fluoro-1-hydroxy-2-propoxy)methyl]guanine ([18F]FHPG, 2) has been synthesized by nucleophilic substitution of N(2)-(p-anisyldiphenylmethyl)-9-[[1-(p-anisyldiphenylmethoxy)-3-toluenesulfonylox y-2-propoxy]methyl]guanine (1) with potassium [18F]fluoride/Kryptofix 2.2.2 followed by deprotection with 1 N HCl and purification with different methods in variable yields. When both the nucleophilic substitution and deprotection were carried out at 90 degrees C and the product was purified by HPLC (method A), the yield of compound 2 was 5-10% and the synthesis time was 90 min from EOB. However, if both the nucleophilic substitution and deprotection were carried out at 120 degrees C and the product was purified by HPLC, the yield of compound 2 decreased to 2%. When compound 2 was synthesized at 90 degrees C and purified by Silica Sep-Pak (method B), the yield increased to 10-15% and the synthesis time was 60 min from EOB. Similarly, 9-(4-[18F]fluoro-3-hydroxymethylbutyl)guanine ([18F]FHBG, 4) was synthesized with method A and method B in 9% and 10-15% yield, respectively, in a synthesis time of 90 and 60 min, respectively, from EOB. Compound 2 was relatively unstable in acidic medium at 120 degrees C while compound 4 was stable under the same condition. Both compound 2 and compound 4 had low lipid/water partition coefficient (0.126 +/- 0.022, n=5 and 0.165 +/- 0.023, n=5, respectively). Although it contains non-radioactive ganciclovir ( approximately 5-30 microg) as a chemical by-product, compound 2 synthesized by method B has a similar uptake in 9L glioma cells as that synthesized by method A, and is a potential tracer for imaging herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase gene expression in tumors using PET. Similarly, compound 4 synthesized by method B contains approximately 10-25 microg of penciclovir as a chemical by-product. Thus, the simplified one pot synthesis (method B) is a useful method for synthesizing both compound 2 and compound 4 in good yield for routine clinical use, and the method is readily amenable for automation.