Opening Ceremony for Nuclear Medicine Center in Ufa

15 May 2014

The President of the Republic of Bashkortostan, Rustem Khamitov, and the Chairman of RUSNANO Management Company LLC, Anatoly Chubais, took part in the opening ceremony of a Center for Positron Emission Tomography and Radiosurgery in Ufa. The Center has been created with private investments as part of a joint project between RUSNANO, RosMedTechnology and the Hungarian company Medilux to build Russia’s first federal network of diagnostic positron emission tomography (PET) centers. The new facility has its own production of ultra-short-lived isotopes and radiopharmaceuticals.

The total budget of the project, which is being implemented by the RUSNANO portfolio company PET Technology in the Central Federal District and the Republic of Bashkortostan, is 6.4 billion rubles, including 2.4 billion rubles of co-financing by RUSNANO. Investments in the Ufa Center were about 956 million rubles. The ​​PET Center has total floor space of 2,800 sqm.

More than 170 patients have already undergone a course of PET/CT diagnosis at the Center, which is scheduled to increase its annual capacity to 5,000 patients by the end of 2015. The opening of the Center in Ufa has made high-tech diagnosis and treatment of cancer more accessible for residents of the Republic of Bashkortostan and the Volga Federal District.

Positron emission tomography is one of the most recent and most promising methods of detecting oncological, cardiological and neurological diseases. The technique has the key advantage of enabling diagnosis of diseases in the early stages, determining the extent of the disease process and its pathological impact, as well as monitoring the effectiveness of chemotherapy.

The Center is equipped with a unitary range of high-tech equipment provided by GE Healthcare: a cyclotron, automatic module for synthesis of radiopharmaceuticals, a PET/CT scanner and quality control equipment, which is now the world standard for radionuclide diagnostic facilities.

In the near future the center will also launch another unique technology: a robotized “Cyberknife”—radiosurgery unit, capable of effective radiation treatment of malignant tumors with sub-millimeter accuracy.

The Center’s medical and technical personnel underwent nearly a year of training prior to the opening at leading federal and university clinics in Russia, the United States and Europe specialized in nuclear medicine and radiation therapy. This work will continue in the future.

The Ufa Center is the first of a series of nuclear medicine facilities to be set up by PET Technology. The centers will be connected to a single medical information system, enabling remote analysis of data from patient examinations and optimal use of the human potential of Russia’s leading experts in the field of nuclear medicine.

PET centers are to be created in the cities of Lipetsk, Orel, Tambov and Bryansk, and a further stage of the project will see the opening of centers in Ekaterinburg, Samara, Novosibirsk and Kaluga.

Technical Note

Positron emission tomography and computed tomography (PET/CT) is a radionuclide tomographic technique for the study of human internal organs. The technique is based on recording of a pair of gamma rays produced in the annihilation of positrons with electrons. Positrons are created by the beta decay of the radionuclide, which is part of a radiopharmaceutical that is injected intravenously into the body before the patient examination and that selectively accumulates in tumor tissues.

The method uses special detection equipment (a PET scanner) to monitor the distribution in the body of biologically active compounds, marked with positron-emitting radioisotopes. At present the PET technique mainly uses positron-emitting isotopes of the elements in the second period of the periodic system, usually fluorine-18, which has optimal features for use in PET (longest half-life and lowest energy radiation).

Fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG), a biological analogue of glucose, is most frequently used for positron emission tomography, because its molecule contains the radioactive (positron-emitting) nuclide, fluorine-18 (18-FDG). FDG is injected into the patient and distributed throughout the body. Tumor cells consume glucose much more intensively than others, so areas of FDG accumulation recorded by the PET scanner can be identified with accumulations of tumor cells.

Fluorine-18 is obtained using a cyclic accelerator such as a medical cyclotron (more rarely a linear accelerator). The target is usually pure water or water enriched with oxygen-18, which is subjected to proton bombardment. Oxygen-18 is obtained by means of low-temperature rectification.

Additional information

Reference

RUSNANO Joint-Stock Company was founded in March 2011 through reorganization of state corporation Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies. JSC RUSNANO contributes to implementation of the state policy on the development of the nanotechnology industry by investing directly and through investment funds of nanotechnology in financially effective high-technology projects providing the development of new production facilities in the Russian Federation. Its primary investment focus is in electronics, optoelectronics and telecommunications, healthcare and biotechnology, metallurgy and metalwork, energy, mechanical engineering and instrument making, construction and industrial materials, chemicals and petrochemicals. 100 percent of shares of JSC RUSNANO are owned by the state. Thanks to investments RUSNANO currently opened 84 factories and R&D centers in 30 regions of Russia.

Management of assets of RUSNANO JSC is carried out by Limited Liability Company established in December 2013, RUSNANO Management Company. Anatoly Chubais is the Chairman of its Executive Board.

Work to establish nanotechnology infrastructure and carry out educational programs is fulfilled by RUSNANO’s Fund for Infrastructure and Educational Programs, which was also established during the reorganization of the Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies.