Navigation Links
Hospital scanner could curb nuclear waste threat
Date:1/29/2010

Medical equipment used for diagnosis of patients with heart disease and cancer could be a key weapon in stopping nuclear waste seeping into the environment, according to new research.

A team of scientists from the Universities of Manchester and Leeds have joined forces with experts in nuclear medicine at Manchester Royal Infirmary, using medical gamma-ray cameras to track radioactive isotopes in soil samples from a US civil nuclear site.

This is the first time the technique, which is used in hospitals for heart, bone and kidney scanning, has been used to study the environmental behaviour of nuclear waste and its success could help scientists find new ways of using bacteria to control the spread of radioactivity.

Radioactive isotopes of the element technetium (Tc) are produced in bulk by nuclear facilities, while a specific isotope of Tc with a very short life is routinely used as a medical tracer in human bodies.

Nuclear fission of Uranium has released tonnes of Tc from nuclear facilities over the past decades, with the element remaining radioactive for thousands of years.

But although the short lived medical isotope is chemically indistinguishable from that in long lived waste, it can be used safely in tests.

In the study researchers from The University of Manchester, led by Prof Jon Lloyd, took soil samples from the Oak Ridge nuclear facility in the United States and successfully tracked the movement of medical Tc through the soil.

Scientists at The University of Leeds were then asked to verify the observations using a special microscope technique called Transmission electron microscopy (TEM).

With the help of DNA analysis the Manchester team confirmed that certain microbes and particularly some that use ferric iron for energy can fix Tc in place in soils.

Researchers found that nearly all the Tc remained fixed when ferric iron was present with these 'iron-reducing' bacteria.

This finding itself is not new Professor Lloyd and his colleagues had previously reported that microbes in laboratory cultures could perform this role in fixing Tc.

But the researchers' success in using the gamma camera could see the technique being used to probe how Tc and ferric iron move together in far more complex soil systems more representative of the 'real world' helping develop future remediation techniques.

Prof Jon Lloyd from the School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Science (SEAES) at The University of Manchester, said: "Using this medical scanning technique we were able to explore, in real time, the mobility of one of the most problematic and mobile radionuclides in sediments.

"Our success will allow scientists to accurately monitor the success of new biological methods in trapping radioactive elements in sediments and stopping them spreading further into the natural environment."

The findings coincide with the opening of a new Research Centre for Geological Disposal at The University, supported by a 1.4m endowment from BNFL, while a new Nuclear Medicine Centre recently opened at the Manchester Royal Infirmary, as part of the 500m Central Manchester Hospitals development.

Prof Lloyd added: "Investment in these two diverse but important areas of scientific research has helped bring about interesting and unexpected research findings that could ultimately have great benefit for society."


'/>"/>

Contact: Alex Waddington
alex.waddington@manchester.ac.uk
01-612-758-387
University of Manchester
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. University Hospitals Case Medical Center testing gene therapy for Alzheimers disease
2. Pollution linked to hospitalizations for pneumonia in older adults
3. New study finds MRSA on the rise in hospital outpatients
4. Picis ED PulseCheck Increases Security and Privacy Protection in Nearly 150 Hospitals Through the Use of DigitalPersona Biometrics
5. NeuroAIDS is target of federal grant to Childrens Hospital
6. Miriam Hospital researcher receives more than $12 million to study weight control
7. Bates County Memorial Hospital Integrates Fujitsu PalmSecure Biometric Solution Into New Time and Attendance System
8. Rensselaer leads effort to replace 1 of the most widely used drugs in American hospitals
9. Reducing risk of hospitalization in the elderly
10. $29.4 million grant establishes CTSI at NYU in partnership with Health and Hospitals Corporation
11. Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC scientists identify enzyme important in aging
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/3/2016)... , May 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, a ... the MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) ... large-scale multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can process multiple ... using any combination of fingerprint, face or iris ... MegaMatcher SDK and MegaMatcher Accelerator , ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... , April 27, 2016 ... the  "Global Multi-modal Biometrics Market 2016-2020"  report to ... ) , The analysts forecast the ... CAGR of 15.49% during the period 2016-2020.  ... number of sectors such as the healthcare, BFSI, ...
(Date:4/14/2016)... TEL AVIV, Israel , April 14, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... in Behavioral Authentication and Malware Detection, today announced the ... has already assumed the new role. Goldwerger,s ... for BioCatch, on the heels of the deployment of ... In addition, BioCatch,s behavioral biometric technology, which discerns unique ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... While the majority of commercial ... Cary 5000 and the 6000i models are higher end machines that use the more ... the spectrophotometer’s light beam from the bottom of the cuvette holder. , FireflySci ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016   Boston ... of novel compounds designed to target cancer stemness ... has been granted Orphan Drug Designation from the ... treatment of gastric cancer, including gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) ... inhibitor designed to inhibit cancer stemness pathways by ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. is pleased ... received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI approval of ... Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate methods perform ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... today announced the launch of the Supplyframe Design Lab . Located in ... to explore the future of how hardware projects are designed, built and brought ...
Breaking Biology Technology: