FDA, Health Canada approve isotope imports from Poland
The Food and Drug Administration and the Canadian regulatory agency Health Canada have each approved the importation of molybdenum-99 from the Warsaw, Poland-based Maria Research Reactor for use in producing the imaging isotope technetium-99m, according to a news release. The uranium byproduct will be imported and used by medical supply company Covidien, Mansfield, Mass., to produce the isotope, which is used in approximately 80% of all nuclear diagnostic tests. The isotope has been in short supply since the shutdown of Canada’s Chalk River reactor in February 2009 and subsequent maintenance-related shutdowns of other reactors around the globe. The arrangement is expected to supply enough isotopes to produce 1 million imaging studies worldwide over the next six months.