DOSE VUE for Safer Radiation
MYRRHA, a Multi-purpose hYbrid Research Reactor for High-tech Applications
The technology that has been originally developed for the MYRRHA-project has a major role for this need. The high power of MYRRHA’s proton accelerator and dedicated isotope production programs will allow the supply of these isotopes in large quantities. Moreover, MYRRHA enables the production of different isotopes of the same family (such as various isotopes of terbium) with extremely high isotopic purity
With 12.6 million new cases and 7.5 million deaths each year, cancer remains a major public health issue. Some 50 to 60% of patients undergo radiotherapy, sometimes in combination with surgery or drugs, as part of their treatment. DoseVue NV, spin-off at SCK•CEN created in 2013, is developing technology to make high-dose radiotherapy more accurate and efficacious.
SCK•CEN, a Belgian nuclear research centre located in Mol, produces radio-isotopes and visualizes the movement of the particles to support fusion-research at MYRRHA, a Multi-purpose hYbrid Research Reactor for High-tech Applications. The result of this research is now being used for medical imaging and medical treatment such as cancer therapy and even pain control. SCK•CEN became, thanks to this high-end research, one of the most important suppliers of medical radio isotopes worldwide. Moreover, SCK CEN co-invested in DOSEVUE along with its founders
Targeted radionuclide therapy is therefore a very promising method for cancer treatment, especially for those cases when classical methods (surgery, external radiation therapy, …) cannot be applied. However, the lack of sustainable radio-isotope supplies is currently hindering this treatment. Thanks to fusion know-how, DoseVue has developed an independent device to monitor the impurities in the body. Hereby, doctors will be able to measure the emitted dose, to accurately monitor the radio-isotope in the body from the outside and to analyse the behavior of the organs or metabolism involved. DoseVue helps early identification of potential errors without harming healthy tissue around the impurity. These radio-isotopes help to destroy cancer cells.
Major Supplier of most common radio-isotope : Tc-99
Today, over 10,000 hospitals worldwide use radio-isotopes in medicine and about 90% of the procedures are for diagnosis (tumor visualization). The most common radio-isotope used in SPECT imaging, technetium-99 (Tc-99), is formed by the decay of molybdenum-99. More than 30 million procedures are performed with this radio-isotope each year, accounting for about 80% of all nuclear medicine procedures worldwide. Currently, the BR2 reactor and MYRRHA at SCK•CEN are major players in the global supply of the Tc-99.
In December 2018, The Innovation Fund participated to a financing round together with SCK-CEN and Limburgse Reconversie Maatschappij (LRM)