China touts nuclear medicine isotope supply

China reported it has produced kilogram-level amounts of molybdenum-100 (Mo-100) for the first time.

The China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) said the achievement was made possible by technology breakthroughs involving isotope separation at one of its research reactors by a scientific research team with nearly 30 years of continuous research and development experience.

“China has reached the world’s leading level in the field of high-abundance stable isotope research, making it one of the few countries that can obtain molybdenum isotopes in bulk,” the CNNC said in a statement.

Prior to the achievement, the country relied completely on imports of molybdenum isotopes, the CNNC added.

Mo-100 is the parent isotope of molybdenum-99 (Mo-99), which further decays to technetium-99m (Tc-99m), one of the most widely used radioisotopes worldwide in nuclear medicine imaging.

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