According to the World Health Organization, cancer is one of the main causes of mortality and persistent disability in the world. Annually about 14 million sickness cases and more than 9 million deaths from this disease are registered. In accordance with experts, the modern method of nuclear medicine is able to increase the share of early detection of malignant tumors from the current 40% to 75% and decrease cancer mortality rate by 25-30%.
Currently, the University possesses a number of unique approaches and technologies in the matter of cancer treatment. TPU has the one and only nuclear research reactor in the Asian part of the country. Along with fundamental research in the field of nuclear physics, the University researchers use it for solving more applied tasks. For example, it is used for the production of radiopharmaceuticals for the diagnosis of oncological, cardiological, and other severe diseases.
By now, the University has formed a number of competencies and obtained results on the promising areas of nuclear medicine development. It developed a non-waste technology for production of technetium, developed a line of promising radiopharmaceuticals on its basis (antitumor antibiotics, glucose derivatives for cancer diagnosis, nanocolloid radiopharmaceuticals for visualization of guard lymph nodes, and etc.), developed technology of neutron therapy, created small-sized betatrons for medical purposes, and etc. The obtained results were introduced into clinical practice.
The University core scientific equipment includes the nuclear research reactor IRT-T (W = 6 MW), the cyclotron (E = 12 MeV), complex of hot chambers for working with radioactive materials, complex of clean rooms (300 m2) for production of radioisotopes and radiopharmaceuticals, certified by GMP standards (class D and C), accelerator equipment, and the center for collective use of analytical equipment. In total, there are about 200 units of experimental equipment, including 23 computer rooms and nuclear reactor analytical simulators. The University researchers have already made several breakthrough discoveries in nuclear medicine, using the available potential. For example, for the first time in the world, they managed to obtain nanocolloidal preparation based on aluminum oxide labeled with isotope technique-99, crucial for the precise diagnosis of oncological diseases-detection of watchdog lymph nodes. The full history of the research rector you may find on its page.
The University research team conducted preliminary tests of the functional suitability of the technetium99-labeled mini-antibody on positive and negative HER2 / neu lines of mammary adenocarcinoma cell. The team carried out screening of quality of Doxorubicin 99mTc samples according to the nature of scintigraphic images during its distribution in the body of laboratory animals. The conducted research projects demonstrated significantly (by 9-10 times) higher rate of accumulation of radiopharmaceuticals in the malignant tumor cells with overexpression of HER2 /neu comparing to the control group.
The University developed a technology for production of a lyophilized reagent with extended shelf life for following preparation of dosage form of the radiopharmaceutical 1-thio-D-glucose, 99mTc. An original method was developed for synthesis of a bifunctional chelator and another method for attaching a synthesized chelator to a mini-antibody. The team carried out complex studies on evaluation of the functional suitability of the glucose derivative of 1-thio-D-glucose. On the basis of the first horizontal experimental channel of the reactor, one created a protective box with a set of devices for conducting studies in the field of neutron-capture therapy of malignant tumors.
The University researchers used experimental methods to study nuclear physical characteristics of neutron field of the extracted neutron beam. Through calculation one attempts optimizing nuclear-physical characteristics of the extracted neutron beam in order to obtain maximum neutron flux density of the required range.
Behind these complex terms stand one simple thing: the number of patients examined and diagnosed using medicines produced by TPU or jointly with TPU goes to millions. Every case of early detection of the disease is a life saved!
The fundamental and applied research will be conducted in the framework of a number of international collaboration groups, such as: CERN, DESY, KEK, IFW, Johannes Gutenberg University, and etc. Along with this, the University will be engaged in training of world-class specialists with advanced professional knowledge on the boundary of engineering and medical sciences. In 2015, TPU developed and launched the Master's degree program in Nuclear Medicine. The program is carried out on a network principle jointly by TPU and Siberian State Medical University. In the following year, the academic program is planned to be upgraded and translated into English, so international students and experts can get acquainted with it.
Nuclear medicine is a promising scientific area due to the current level of nuclear technology and searches for methods for early cancer detection. The level of interest in this area is underlined by the number of highly cited publications in the world leading scientific magazines.
The conducted studies and obtained data were used to extend borders in the related area and creation of StrAU Nuclear Technologies for Oncology. This StrAU will work on the creation of promising radiopharmaceuticals for early diagnosis and personalized therapy of oncological diseases, development of radiological complexes, and new methods of radiotherapy of oncological diseases.