Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Canuks Deliver Uranium-free Medical Isotopes

A team of Canadian reserachers enable a shift away from nuclear reactor-based production of medical isotopes to an accellerator-based technology. As reported in Exchange Magazine, regular cyclotrons in service around the world can now supply local needs for the Tc-99m isotope.

Here are excerpts from a 2011 report by the University of Alberta announcing a promising answer to an impending globa need:

UAlberta researcher Dr. Sandy McEwan and his team produced high-quality Tc-99m using a cyclotron (i.e., a particle accelerator). The team believe this was the first time Tc-99m was successfully created in commercially viable quantities using a cyclotron. The first human clinical trials of their Tc-99m followed—trials performed to international Good Clinical Practice (GCP) standards designed to protect the rights of trial subjects and ensure the safety and efficacy of newly developed compounds—the first time such a study was performed to GCP standards.
Results showed Tc-99m can be created in a cyclotron, that it’s safe to use and its quality and behaviour are the same as reactor isotopes—meaning a safe, reliable, cost-effective isotope supply doesn't require nuclear reactors. Moreover, unlike reactor isotopes, cyclotron isotopes don’t need enriched uranium and don’t produce nuclear waste or toxic by-products. This breakthrough also has an addition advantage—rector production costs will steadily increase due to costly reactor retrofitting or replacement

Not only is a secure supply of this isotope great news for oncologists and their cancer patients, but it also gives some relief to the UN's nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency. In attempting to limit construction of power plants to peaceful purposes, alternatives to weapons grade uranium are becoming available, i.e. LENR for heat and electricity, and now the use of cyclotrons for medical isotopes.
Having developed Candu Reactor power plants back in the 1960's and later supplying much of the world's need for medical isotopes, and now the cyclotron enhancement, perhaps research funders in Canada are capable of stimulating performance in playing LENR catch-up.

Based on evidence evolving in 2014, a majority of the UN's non-petrol producing members would endorse fast-tracking LENR and the Cyclotron innovation.
From Nagazaki to Chernobyl to Fukishima, to the 2014 perfection of LENR, Enlightened Nations now have the means of replacing disasterous Big Nuclear. Canada's able representative on the IAEA Bord of Directors, Dr. Tom Ruth is a strong voice for getting these matters on the agenda.
Dateline London, Ontario
February 20, 2015
Chalk River reactor closes in 2018, Clinics make their own medical isotopes used in PET scans: