The PET Cyclotron Radiochemistry Laboratory is located on the lower level of Huntsman Cancer Institute. The lab opened in November 2002. The 4,330-square-foot facility includes the following:
- Clean storage
- Research laboratory
- Quality control laboratory
- Synthesis lab
- A class-10,000 clean room
- Two class-100 hoods
- Shipping room
- Electronics room
- Tank room
- Cyclotron room
Cyclotron Technical Specifications
The GE PETrace Cyclotron is a negative ion accelerator in a self-shielded configuration, 16.5 MeV protons at 100 µA, dual target simultaneous irradiation, proton or deuteron particles. There are six target configurations—F-high yield niobium targets (two, each capable of generating 5.5 Ci in 120 min, simultaneously), F2 target, O-15 target, N-13 target, and C-11 target.
The Molecular Imaging Program at Huntsman Cancer Institute expanded the radiochemistry production facilities by adding additional lead shields (mini-cells) for more radiochemistry synthesis production capabilities. There are a total of 8 mini-cells manufactured by Jaltech to allow for synthesis units to be installed and dedicated to manufacturing a variety of research tracers. In addition a larger shielded module with remote manipulators (Capintec) is also available to allow chemists to perform manual purification of radioactive compounds in high quantities and prepare them for research applications.
Commercial 15 O-water and 13 N-ammonia synthesis modules are up and running for research applications. Additional radiochemistry research equipment includes the following:
- Analytical HPLC with radio and UV detectors
- Miscellaneous QC equipment
- Lead bricks
- Radiochemistry development lab with tubing, glassware, connectors, pipettes, valves, vials, and electronics
The laboratory has a GE TRACERlab FX/F-N ™ general nucleophilic substitution synthesis unit (more information). This is an automated system designed for easy and efficient production of general [18F] Fluoride (nucleophilic)-based tracers. The [18F] Fluoride is trapped from the 18O-water allowing one to reuse the water after careful purification if desired. The system releases [18F]Fluoride and transfers it into the organic phase with a phase transfer catalyst when reacted with a substrate. The system enables the chemist to evaporate the reactor and operates in a temperature range between 30 degrees C and 200 degrees C, purifying the integrated preparative HPLC system. To separate the product from the HPLC solvent, the system uses an integrated solid phase extraction system. Finally, the product is formulated and sterile filtered to get an injectable solution.
The laboratory has a GE TRACERlab FXC Pro™ automated versatile synthesizer for easy and efficient production of [11C] labeled tracers. It facilitates methylation reactions using methyl iodide or methyl triflate produced from either carbon dioxide or methane. Purification is achieved by an integrated preparative HPLC system. Through the application software, all process steps are easily programmed to produce the required tracers.
The laboratory has two GE FASTlab™ synthesis units. This system is an automated PET radiochemistry synthesis platform. Beyond delivering the speed, efficiency, economy and regulatory answers required to meet today's busy PET radiochemistry demands, FASTlab also offers the versatility and flexibility to develop and produce additional fluoride-based tracers such as FLT and numerous other radiopharmaceuticals thus ensuring the capacity to always keep ahead of future molecular imaging applications.
The laboratory also has available a BioScan AutoLoop 11C-Methylation System (Mel Plus, Autoloop, and Reformulation) which uses the proprietary "Loop" technique developed and patented by Alan Wilson and co-workers at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) and the University of Toronto. This unit uses a standard 11C-methylation reaction carried out in a stainless steel HPLC injection loop with very small amounts of solvent (less than 100?L) and precursor (0.1-1.2mg). Methyl iodide or Methyl triflate is trapped by dissolution in the solvent (trapping efficiencies are >90%), and the reaction proceeds in the closed-off loop at room temperature for one to five minutes depending on the compound. When the reaction is complete, the contents of the loop are rinsed by the HPLC solvent directly onto a semi-prep column for purification. Included with the systems is PET Empower software which is a GLP/cGMP compliant software package for Bioscan's PET tracer chemistry modules. For the Auto-Loop systems, several key features help speed method development for research chemists. Once developed, technicians can secure and use methods for reliable, routine production. For more information see
Synthesis Lab Hot Cells
Clean Room Hot Cell
F-18 FDG Module
F-18 FLT Module
C-11 Acetate Module
O-15 Water Module