New Radioisotope for Cancer Therapy: A new Collaboration to produce copper-67
August 25, 2021
SASKATOON – Iotron Medical Inc. (Iotron) and Canadian Isotope Innovations Corp. (CIIC) are pleased to announce a collaboration to produce the radioisotope copper-67 (Cu-67) for new cancer therapies. This investment will increase the production capacity of the CIIC-operated facilities in Saskatoon, making Cu-67 more widely available to international cancer researchers.
Iotron Medical, a spin-out business of Iotron Industries, has been providing innovative solutions using electron beam technology for more than 25 years. CIIC is a startup company, producing medical radioisotopes using a novel linear accelerator-based method initially developed at the Canadian Light Source.
Cu-67 has long been known for its excellent properties for personalized cancer therapy but has been extremely difficult to produce with sufficient quantity and purity using nuclear reactors or cyclotrons. Lack of an adequate and reliable supply of this radioisotope has prevented medical researchers from exploring the potential of Cu-67 in new targeted cancer therapies.
“Iotron is excited about the future for Cu-67 and the opportunity to work with CIIC to make the benefits of this radioisotope available to the wider market, and positively impact the lives of so many people,” said Mike Scott, Iotron Board Chair.
CIIC and Iotron are proud to establish the world’s first private sector producer and supplier of this valuable radioisotope, building on the application innovations and accelerator expertise of both parties. This novel production method for high purity Cu-67 is needed by researchers and pharmaceutical companies developing new drugs for a variety of cancers including neuroendocrine tumors, prostate and neuroblastoma. When linked to a suitable targeting agent, Cu-67 delivers highly localized radiation to tumor cells.
“CIIC looks forward to working with our partner Iotron to bring this important radioisotope to market and to produce it in the volume needed for researchers and the broader pharmaceutical community,” said Dr. Mark de Jong, Chief Technical Officer of CIIC.
Iotron and CIIC have committed to a five-year agreement that will establish a stable and reliable source of Cu-67, with plans to expand production further as market demand grows. The first shipments of Cu-67 have been made to a US research group in July demonstrating the ability of Iotron-CIIC to make and supply this critical isotope. Batches of Cu-67 are being produced biweekly for researchers, and by the end of 2021, more will be available to support clinical trials in North America and around the world.
For more information about the CIIC-Iotron collaboration or to order Cu-67 radioisotope please refer to the website at www.copper67.com.
For media interviews please contact Mark de Jong 306 380-8823 or Mike Scott at 250 615-2626.
About the Collaboration Parties:
Iotron Medical Inc. (Iotron) is a spin-out of the Iotron Group which pioneered the use of electron beam technology at sites in both Canada and the USA for the sterilization of medical devices, cross-linking polymers used in orthopedics, and sanitizing agricultural products. These operations were sold in 2020 leaving Iotron to focus on commercialization of Cu-67.
Canadian Isotope Innovations Corp. (CIIC) produces safe, reliable and cost-effective medical isotopes using a dedicated novel linear accelerator facility developed initially by the Canadian Light Source (CLS), and processing facilities at the Fedoruk Centre. Both facilities are located at the University of Saskatchewan thanks to investment from the Government of Canada and Government of Saskatchewan. CIIC is located in Saskatoon, Canada.[ssba]