National Cyclotron Network to Solve Canada’s Medical Isotope Crisis


Advanced Cyclotron Systems Inc. (ACSI), a leading provider of cyclotron technology for international Nuclear Medicine Industries, announces the submission of their proposal for a “National Cyclotron Network to Produce Medical Isotopes” to the Government of Canada’s Expert Review Panel on Medical Isotope Production.
In the submission, ACSI, in collaboration with several Canadian universities, research centers, hospitals and companies, proposes to establish a National Cyclotron Network that would meet the needs of Canada’s entire technetium-99m requirements in a timely, cost effective, scalable, safe, and reliable manner. Technetium-99m is a medical isotope used to detect cancer, heart disease or kidney malfunction and has been in short supply due to the Chalk River reactor shutdown.
ACSI proposes to use its new 24 MeV, TR-24, cyclotron to produce technetium-99m directly from enriched molybdenum-100 and use existing distribution networks  for  technetium-99  and  other  radiopharmaceuticals.  The TR-24 cyclotron is commercially available and recently has been licensed by Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission. With several participating organizations already planning installation of TR-24 cyclotrons in the very near future this network can start supplying technetium-99 and other medical isotopes in 15-16 months and in 2 to 3 years by strategically locating eight technetium producing centers  across Canada could meet the entire Canadian technetium-99m requirements.
The Cyclotron Network approach is scalable and will not only supply technetium-99m, but will also provide abundant quantities of PET and SPECT medical isotopes.  “Cyclotrons are already used to supply the majority of medical radioisotopes other than technetium-99 that are used in routine practice.  To solve the current significant issues with the supply of technetium-99m the community must think creatively. Past local supply problems have, in fact, been solved by the creative use of cyclotron technology” said Dr. Sandy McEwan, Chair of Oncology at the University of Alberta. An National Cyclotron Network also ensures a steady and reliable supply of isotopes because even if one cyclotron were to temporarily go offline for maintenance, the other cyclotrons would be available to fill the shortage.
This Cyclotron Network solution is a true “Made in Canada” solution; the technology is Canadian and the manufacture of the cyclotron and other capital equipment as well as the actual production of the medical isotopes and their subsequent distribution will be done by Canadian companies and institutions. The technology is proven and commercially available today. Implementing the proposed model will position Canada at the forefront of nuclear medicine and will provide long-term benefits for the Canadian economy and health care system.

About Advanced Cyclotron Systems Inc.

Advanced Cyclotron Systems Inc., a Richmond based company, is the leading manufacturer of high output cyclotrons for the international nuclear medicine community. ACSI TR series cyclotrons are used for the commercial production and distribution of PET and SPECT radioisotopes by the world’s leading radioisotope producers and are also used in leading research facilities. Some of our customers include GE Healthcare, MDS Nordion, Covidien, Cardinal Health, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cross Cancer Insitute (Edmonton), Sherbrooke University, and BC Cancer Agency. The ACSI TR cyclotron series represent the newest generation of cyclotrons and are the most powerful and versatile commercial cyclotrons in the world. ACSI’s dedicated team of scientists and engineers design, build and install state-of-the-art cyclotron systems. The advanced technological design and our ongoing commitment to research and development make ACSI cyclotron systems perfect for today’s needs and tomorrow’s opportunities.

Umendra Mital, M.A.Sc., P. Eng.
Vice President and General Manager


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