Biological Trace Element Research

, Volume 71, Issue 1, pp 519–526 | Cite as

Experience on the neutron activation of natural/enriched Re, Sm, and Ho nuclides in a reactor for the production of radiotherapeutic radionuclides

  • Malik M. Ishfaq
  • Ahmad Mushtaq
  • M. Jawaid
Section 5: Nuclear Analytical Methodology


In recent years, much effort has been concentrated on the use of Β-emitting radionuclides for the treatment of various cancers. The reports suggested the application of186Re and153Sm as radiotherapeutic radionuclides for the treatment of palliative widespread skeletal métastases, whereas166Ho was suggested as an agent for radiation synovectomy. Hence, a study on the production of186Re,153Sm, and166Ho radionuclides was carried out by neutron activation of the appropriate target materials using a Pakistan Atomic Research Reactor (PARR-1) at a neutrons flux of 1 x 104 n/cm2 s. These radionuclides were then converted to appropriate radiopharmaceuticals for their use on animals and patients.

The targets of natural Re (metal), natural Sm2O3, enriched Sm2O3 (99.06%), Sm(NO3)3 (solid), Sm(NO3)3 (liquid), and Ho2O3 were irradiated in the PARR-1. After irradiation, the purity of these radionuclides were checked by a multichannel analyzer, Canberra series 85 (MCA) coupled with HPGe detector and then measured in radioisotope calibrator Capintec ionization chamber model CRC-5RH. The effect of the irradiation time and amount of target material was investigated on the production yields of the radionuclides. The results showed an increase in the specific activity of Re with an increase in the irradiation time from 1 to 72 h, whereas a decrease in the specific activity was observed with increase in the amount of Re from 10 to 100 mg. Similar results were obtained for153Sm and166Ho radionuclides. The results further indicated that the specific activity of powder target was much less than the liquid targets for153Sm. Their conversion to the appropriate radiotherapeutic radiopharmaceuticals were also carried out by investigating the experimental conditions and acceptable quality of186Re-HEDP and153Sm-EDTMP complexes were prepared. These complexes were then used on animals and patients which showed good performance.

Index Entries

Neutron activation analysis radiorhenium radiosamarium radioholmium reactor radiotherapeutic radionuclides 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Malik M. Ishfaq
    • 1
  • Ahmad Mushtaq
    • 1
  • M. Jawaid
    • 1
  1. 1.Nuclear Chemistry Division, Radioisotope Production GroupPakistan Institute of Nuclear Science and TechnologyIslamabadPakistan

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