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Nucl Med Biol. 2011 Aug;38(6):917-24. doi: 10.1016/j.nucmedbio.2011.02.007. Epub 2011 Apr 20.

The low-energy β(-) and electron emitter (161)Tb as an alternative to (177)Lu for targeted radionuclide therapy.

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Institute for Radiochemistry, Technical University of Munich, Walther-Meissner-Strasse 3, 85748 Garching, Germany.



The low-energy β(-) emitter (161)Tb is very similar to (177)Lu with respect to half-life, beta energy and chemical properties. However, (161)Tb also emits a significant amount of conversion and Auger electrons. Greater therapeutic effect can therefore be expected in comparison to (177)Lu. It also emits low-energy photons that are useful for gamma camera imaging.


The (160)Gd(n,γ)(161)Gd→(161)Tb production route was used to produce (161)Tb by neutron irradiation of massive (160)Gd targets (up to 40 mg) in nuclear reactors. A semiautomated procedure based on cation exchange chromatography was developed and applied to isolate no carrier added (n.c.a.) (161)Tb from the bulk of the (160)Gd target and from its stable decay product (161)Dy. (161)Tb was used for radiolabeling DOTA-Tyr3-octreotate; the radiolabeling profile was compared to the commercially available n.c.a. (177)Lu. A (161)Tb Derenzo phantom was imaged using a small-animal single-photon emission computed tomography camera.


Up to 15 GBq of (161)Tb was produced by long-term irradiation of Gd targets. Using a cation exchange resin, we obtained 80%-90% of the available (161)Tb with high specific activity, radionuclide and chemical purity and in quantities sufficient for therapeutic applications. The (161)Tb obtained was of the quality required to prepare (161)Tb-DOTA-Tyr3-octreotate.


We were able to produce (161)Tb in n.c.a. form by irradiating highly enriched (160)Gd targets; it can be obtained in the quantity and quality required for the preparation of (161)Tb-labeled therapeutic agents.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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