IRE supplies a first commercial batch of LEU-based Mo-99
The Institute for radioelements (IRE), one of the leaders in the production of Molybdenum-99 (Mo-99), the most widely used radio-isotope in nuclear medicine for diagnosis, announced today that the company produced its first commercial
Mo-99 Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) batch for the US market.
This conversion to LEU represents a key milestone for IRE in the global commitment to end the civil use of High Enriched Uranium (HEU) for the production of Mo-99 medical isotopes. This demonstrates its unique capacity to carry out
advanced R&D activities while maintaining during the last two years its highest production output to serve the global market during temporary or unplanned outages of some alternative suppliers of medical radioisotopes. It achieves
the first step of the complex development of an entirely new industrial process to supply healthcare professionals with Mo-99. This conversion will include very soon the production process for Iodine -131 (I-131), essential and
irreplaceable radionuclide for thyroid cancer treatments, based on LEU. Despite the additional burden induced by the lockdown caused by the COVID-19 crisis, our teams could maintain and complete their planning to receive the authorization
from the FANC, the Federal Agency for Nuclear Control in Belgium. Conversion to LEU will positively impact Safety and Security on site, two components inseparable of our IRE activity, since this new LEU production flow takes place
in refurbished installations that bring many advantages in terms of nuclear safety and nuclear security for our teams.