Canadian Company to Produce Cyclotrons for Medical Isotopes

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A Canadian company has announced it plans to address the shortage in nuclear isotopes for diagnostic imaging by manufacturing cyclotrons needed to create the medical isotopes.

Best Theratronics plans to enter agreements with hospitals, clinics and medical research institutions. “A cyclotron uses a combination of magnets and radio frequency electric fields to accelerate ions to velocities high enough to create isotopes,” according to a press release.

The announcement comes on the heels of research by scientists at Canada’s national laboratory showing that medical isotopes could be produced without a nuclear reactor.

Previously, technetium-99 that’s required for most PET scans, was only obtained from aging nuclear reactors in Europe and Canada.