Robots in the Radiopharmaceutical Laboratory…Will They Replace the Chemist?
Over the past decade, numerous devices have been described for the remote synthesis of compounds labelled with radionuclides. The impetus for the construction of these devices was primarily one of safety: the reduction of radiation dose to personnel responsible for the production of these compounds. Other reasons for devoting time and labor into the manufacture of these apparatus were more of a practical nature: reducing operator error and allowing radiochemists to make more efficient use of their time. In the field of Positron Emission Tomography (PET), apparatus that has been constructed for the remote synthesis of positron emitting radiopharmaceuticals has ranged from the manual operation of remote devices (via electrically or pneumatically-operated valves and switches) to computer-controlled devices which operate continuously without operator intervention.1–8 The complexity of these devices depended on the needs of the facility in order to safely provide routine doses of the desired radiopharmaceuticals. Factors affecting apparatus design were the amount of feedback incorporated into the device, the number of manipulations performed by the apparatus, whether the device was intended to be used for other radiopharmaceutical syntheses, and finally, the amount of operator interaction with the device.
KeywordsPositron Emission Tomography Robotic System Automate Device Synthesis Program Positron Emission Tomography Radiopharmaceutical
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