News | May 29, 2015

Public-Private Partnership Restarting Mo-99 Production in U.S.

Cooperative R&D agreement will develop scalable standalone system for domestic production

May 29, 2015 — National Security Technologies LLC (NSTec) and Henderson, Nevada-based Global Medical Isotope Systems (GMIS) announced a public-private partnership agreement for research and development of an essential radioactive isotope used in millions of medical diagnostic imaging procedures annually.

Known primarily as the management and operations contractor for the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS), NSTec is leveraging its traditional national security role with the signing of its first cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA). The agreement describes NSTec's technical integration, modeling, materials and design support to GMIS's mission in the development and deployment of a ground-breaking approach to the production of the radioactive isotope molybdenum-99 (Mo-99).

By introducing a safe, decentralized, on-demand production system using non-enriched uranium, the two companies are answering a critical supply need of the medical imaging community. The United States terminated its domestic Mo-99 production in the 1990s, but continues to import the isotope from Canada and Europe. In addition, U.S. and global demand for Mo-99 has grown substantially in recent years, making easy and timely access to supplies of the isotope more important than ever.

The imaging isotope Technetium-99m (Tc-99m) is a decay by-product of Mo-99, and has a half-life of only about 6 hours. This unique physical characteristic makes Tc-99m the most widely used medical diagnostic isotope in nuclear medicine. Its short half-life allows it to be used in body-scanning procedures that collect data rapidly, but keeps total patient radiation exposure low — but it also makes keeping an inventory next to impossible. 

Presently, there are about 40 million imaging and diagnostic procedures performed worldwide per year, of which 80-85 percent use Tc-99m. Of those 40 million, more than 20 million are performed in North America, about 1.5 million in Canada, and approximately 15,000 in southern Nevada.

GMIS is currently developing a scalable standalone system to produce the isotope, allowing for custom deployments to other areas of the country.

The five-year CRADA calls for NSTec to provide technical integration, modeling, materials, and design support to GMIS's mission.  

NSTec also brings to the CRADA a staff of nuclear and health physicists, skilled physics and electronics technicians, a variety of radiological materials, and an extensive inventory of radiation detection equipment.

For more information: www.nstec.com

Related Content

New Phase 2B Trial Exploring Target-Specific Myocardial Ischemia Imaging Agent
News | Radiopharmaceuticals and Tracers | May 17, 2019
Biopharmaceutical company CellPoint plans to begin patient recruitment for its Phase 2b cardiovascular imaging study in...
Blue Earth Diagnostics Expands Access to Axumin in Europe
News | Radiopharmaceuticals and Tracers | May 13, 2019
Blue Earth Diagnostics announced expanded access to the Axumin (fluciclovine (18F)) imaging agent in Europe. The first...
Shine Medical Technologies Breaks Ground on U.S. Medical Isotope Production Facility

Image courtesy of Amen Clinics

News | Radiopharmaceuticals and Tracers | May 10, 2019 | Jeff Zagoudis, Associate Editor
Shine Medical Technologies Inc. broke ground on their first medical isotope production facility in Janesville, Wis. U.S...
A 3-D printed tungsten X-ray system collimator. 3D printed, additive manufacturing for medical imaging.

A 3-D printed tungsten X-ray system collimator. The tungsten alloy powder is printed into the form desired and is laser fused so it can be machined and finished. Previously, making collimators from Tungsten was labor intensive because it required working with sheets of the metal to create the collimator matrix. 

Feature | Medical 3-D Printing | April 29, 2019 | By Steve Jeffery
In ...
NIH Study of Brain Energy Patterns Provides New Insights into Alcohol Effects

NIH scientists present a new method for combining measures of brain activity (left) and glucose consumption (right) to study regional specialization and to better understand the effects of alcohol on the human brain. Image courtesy of Ehsan Shokri-Kojori, Ph.D., of NIAAA.

News | Neuro Imaging | March 22, 2019
March 22, 2019 — Assessing the patterns of energy use and neuronal activity simultaneously in the human brain improve
Improving Molecular Imaging Using a Deep Learning Approach
News | Nuclear Imaging | March 21, 2019
Generating comprehensive molecular images of organs and tumors in living organisms can be performed at ultra-fast speed...
PET Scans Show Biomarkers Could Spare Some Breast Cancer Patients from Chemotherapy
News | PET Imaging | March 18, 2019
A new study positron emission tomography (PET) scans has identified a biomarker that may accurately predict which...
Researchers Create New Method for Developing Cancer Imaging Isotopes

Prototype fluidic system for zirconium-89 purification. Image taken through a hot cell window at the Department of Radiology, University of Washington. Image courtesy of Matthew O’Hara, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

News | Radiopharmaceuticals and Tracers | March 14, 2019
A team of researchers at the University of Washington announced they developed a new automated system for producing...
Siemens Healthineers Announces First U.S. Install of Biograph Vision PET/CT
News | PET-CT | March 06, 2019
Siemens Healthineers’ new Biograph Vision positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) system has been...