The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

Biotechnology, Health and Business in Canada, the United States and Worldwide

Chalk River Reactor Isotope Shortage Gets Timing Update, International Attention, Local Solution

683px-Schematicky_atomThe shut-down of Ontario’s Chalk River reactor, one of the few sources of medical isotopes for imaging in the world, is now predicted to last at least three months, and the resulting isotope shortage has been noted by the WSJ’s Health Blog as likely to get “a whole lot worse.”

Meanwhile, in Quebec, Sherbrooke University Hospital is substituting a sodium fluoride isotope for bone scans (about 20-40% of the scans done in a day). It’s a 40-year-old technology that they make in-house using a cyclotron. Cyclotrons, you may have noticed, are much easier to come by than nuclear reactors.

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