NRC draft guidance may complicate patient access to cancer treatment

August 18, 2023, 8:53AMNuclear News

A Nuclear Regulatory Commission draft regulatory guide—DG-8061, “Release of Patients Administered Radioactive Material”—proposes guidance on the release of patients after a medical procedure involving the administration of radiopharmaceuticals or the implantation of a sealed source. The guidance is intended to help licensees interpret NRC regulations designed to protect the people—family, friends, caregivers, or members of the general public—who may be in proximity to a patient who is discharged after receiving nuclear medicine treatment.

Framatome extends partnership with Slovakia’s nuclear operator

June 6, 2023, 7:00AMNuclear News
From left, Framatome’s CEO Bernard Fontana shakes hands with Slovenské Elektrárne’s CEO Branislav Strýček following the signing of an MOU. Also pictured is first vice chairman of Slovenské Elektrárne’s board of directors, Michele Bologna.

Slovakia’s Slovenské Elektrárne—operator of the nation’s two nuclear power plants, Bohunice and Mochovce—and France’s Framatome have signed a memorandum of understanding for the development of a global strategic relationship, the companies announced last week.

IAEA and IsDB collaborate to increase cancer care

May 11, 2023, 7:00AMNuclear News
The IAEA is helping expand the use of nuclear medicine to control cancer in developing nations. (Photo: P.Pavlicek/IAEA)

With funding from the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), the International Atomic Energy Agency is working to help developing countries scale up their cancer care capacities in radiotherapy, the agency said. A multilateral development bank, IsDB works to improve lives by promoting social and economic development in 57 member states and Muslim communities around the world.

NNSA announces progress in Mo-99 production using LEU

April 4, 2023, 7:00AMANS Nuclear Cafe

After more than a decade of global efforts led by the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration, all four major medical producers of the radioisotope molybdenum-99 for the U.S. market are now using low-enriched uranium (LEU) in their production processes instead of high-enriched uranium (HEU), the latter of which presents risks of nuclear weapons proliferation.

Source Security Working Group continues advocating for access to radiological sources

February 28, 2023, 7:07AMANS News

One of the biggest challenges in the nuclear community identified by ANS in 2017 is the continuous availability of radioisotopes. Working to meet that challenge is the ANS-led Source Security Working Group (SSWG), an alliance of industry sectors—including energy, health care, and industrial radiography—that seeks to ensure continued access to radiological sources. The SSWG serves as a strong voice to protect the continued availability of radiological sources, ensuring that laws and policies are risk informed, science based, and support the highest levels of public health and safety.

West Virginia hospital to correct nuclear medicine violations

November 16, 2022, 3:03PMANS Nuclear Cafe

The Cabell Huntington Hospital system, based in Huntington, W.V., has begun implementing corrective actions associated with nuclear medicine activities, in line with a settlement agreement reached with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The agreement stems from NRC inspections at the hospital’s facilities that uncovered 14 violations, described in a June 2022 NRC inspection report. As a result of the hospital taking corrective action, the NRC will not impose civil penalties.

After six decades of IAEA research, NN revisits one scientist’s take on the agency’s early years

October 13, 2022, 3:05PMNuclear News
G. Robert Keepin, of Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, author of a three-part feature on the IAEA published in Nuclear News in January, February, and March of 1966; the cover of the January 1966 issue, featuring the IAEA’s first headquarters in the Grand Hotel of Vienna, Austria; and a February 1966 IAEA photo of remote handling of radioisotope standard sources at the Seibersdorf laboratory.

A groundbreaking ceremony held last week at the International Atomic Energy Agency’s laboratories in Seibersdorf, Austria, marked the start of construction on a nuclear applications building that will host three state-of-the-art laboratories: Plant Breeding and Genetics, Terrestrial Environment and Radiochemistry, and Nuclear Science and Instrumentation.It was a significant achievement for the second phase of the Renovation of the Nuclear Applications Laboratories initiative, known as ReNuAL2—and a fitting way to observe the 60th anniversary of the nuclear applications laboratories at Seibersdorf, about an hour’s drive south the IAEA’s headquarters in Vienna. For Nuclear Newswire, it was all the reason we needed to dig into the Nuclear News archives and explore the bygone days of research at the IAEA.

Latest stats on nuclear energy in Europe released by nucleareurope

June 14, 2022, 8:39AMANS Nuclear Cafe

The Brussels-based nuclear energy trade association nucleareurope has published its latest Infographics, containing a variety of facts and figures on the use of nuclear energy in Europe. Some of the many interesting bits of information in the publication are highlighted below.

MSU’s FRIB: Ready to accelerate discoveries in nuclear physics and applications

May 3, 2022, 7:16AMNuclear News
An aerial view of the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams on the Michigan State University campus in East Lansing, Mich. (Photo: FRIB)

Michigan State University’s Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) officially opened yesterday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, elected officials, and guests who had supported the project during its planning and construction, including ANS Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer Craig Piercy. They were there to celebrate the completion—on time and within budget—of the world’s most powerful heavy-ion accelerator and the first accelerator-based Department of Energy Office of Science user facility located on a university campus.

The case of the Pu-powered pacemaker

January 20, 2022, 12:00PMANS Nuclear Cafe
The cover of the August 1969 issue of Nuclear News (left), an image of Brunhilde, the dog that had the first nuclear-powered pacemaker in the U.S. (center) and the cover of the December 1970 Nuclear News (right).

In this first installment of a #ThrowbackThursday post, Nuclear News provides a review of radioisotope-powered pacemakers in response to an article in The Wall Street Journal. The article, published earlier this week, looks at the issue of disposing of nuclear-powered pacemakers, although considering how few are still in use today, it seems like this is really much ado about nothing.

Protein shows potential to accelerate cancer therapy research and application

October 25, 2021, 3:05PMNuclear News
LLNL and Penn State researchers developed a new approach to study and purify medical isotopes, including actinium. (Image: Thomas Reason/LLNL)

Scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Pennsylvania State University have demonstrated that a natural protein found bonded to rare earth elements can be recovered and used as a tool to purify and effectively manage radioactive metals that show promise for cancer therapy and the detection of illicit nuclear activities.

Treating arrhythmia with radiation yields healthier heart tissue, researchers say

October 6, 2021, 9:30AMNuclear News
Illustration of a normal human heart showing ventricles and valves. (Image: Patrick J. Lynch, medical illustrator; C. Carl Jaffe, M.D., cardiologist)

Therapeutic radiation is typically reserved for cancer treatment, but scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have applied radiation therapy to treat ventricular tachycardia, a life-threatening heart arrhythmia. A news release issued by the university says that the results of the study show that radiation therapy can “reprogram” heart muscle cells to “a younger and perhaps healthier state.” The findings were published in the journal Nature Communications on September 24.

SHINE plans new isotope production facility in the Netherlands

May 24, 2021, 7:00AMNuclear News
A rendering of the SHINE medical isotope production facility planned for construction in Veendam, the Netherlands. (Image: Shine)

SHINE Medical Technologies plans to locate its European medical isotope production facility in the Netherlands after a yearlong search and a review of more than 50 proposals from sites across Europe. The company announced on May 20 that construction at the site should begin in 2023 with commercial production starting in late 2025.

Grants will enhance nuclear medicine and radiology services in Africa

July 28, 2020, 2:57PMNuclear News

Representatives from African countries assembled in 2019 at an event hosted by Nigeria to discuss the need for assistance in nuclear medicine and radiology. Photo: NNSA

The U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration has awarded grants totaling $1.5 million to support an increase in medical staff and the building of facilities and equipment in sub-Saharan Africa, the agency announced on July 27.

The grants of $750,000 each were awarded to the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI).

Nuclear Medicine Radiates Hope For Patients

November 5, 2018, 3:06PMANS Nuclear CafeEmma Meyers

As a fourth year nursing student working in Chicago area hospitals, I deal with nuclear medicine quite often. The term "nuclear medicine" can sound disconcerting, but when you are familiar with it, I assure you, it's not. Just think of it as a bunch of necessary medical tools with a little radiation thrown in. I know what you are thinking. Radiation? What? Relax. It's fine. You already know it, and either you, or someone you know, has been exposed to this specific area of medicine via certain procedures.

A Salute to Medical Ionizing Radiation During Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October 17, 2012, 6:00AMANS Nuclear CafeBryan Bednarz

As a cancer researcher, I am constantly reminded of the horrific impact that breast cancer has on women and their families. This past week I received notification from my boss informing me and others that a work colleague's daughter had recently passed away from breast cancer at the age of 40-certainly this reminder was much closer to home than usual. It is difficult to imagine the pain and suffering my colleague and his wife are now experiencing, adding to what I am sure was a nerve-racking and exhausting period of consultations for the family and treatments for his daughter.