Iran ranks third in the world in producing Oxygen 18 used in radio medicine

December 1, 2019

TEHRAN - Iran ranks third in the world in terms of producing Oxygen 18 isotope, which is utilized in radio medicine production. 

Generally, in the radiopharmaceutical industry, enriched water (H2 18 O) is bombarded with hydrogen ions in either a cyclotron or linear accelerator, creating fluorine-18. This is then synthesized into FDG and injected into a patient.

Iran is the third country that has managed to produce Oxygen 18,” says MP Mohammad Ebrahim Rezayee, chief of the nuclear sub-committee of the parliament.

The nuclear sub-committee is a subsidiary of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee.

Rezaye visited the Arak heavy water reactor along with some other senior MPs and advisors to the sub-committee on Wednesday.  They were informed about the latest technical, engineering and productive developments in the facility. .They also visited research facilities that are relevant to production of very important isotopes including Oxygen 18 as well as the process of a project for re-designing the Arak reactor

The visit took place in line with a mission by the Majlis national security committee to prepare a report on the activities of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) during a six-month period since Iran decided to reduce its commitments to the JCPOA in retaliation for the abrogation of the deal by Trump and return of sanctions. 

Under the JCPOA, the official name for the 2015 nuclear agreement, Iran was allowed to  keep reserves of its heavy water below 130 tons. However, the Trump administration, under its policy of maximum pressure against Iran, banned the sale of heavy water.

According to the terms of the JCPOA,  Iran exported its heavy water and instead imported yellow cake. The heavy water reserves are now beyond 130 tons.

Despite the U.S. exit from the JCPOA, Tehran remained fully compliant with the international document for a whole year, giving time to the remaining co-signatories to fulfill their legal undertakings and protect Iran’s economy against the reinstated U.S. bans.

Iran, however, began to gradually reduce its JCPOA commitments after the European Union, especially its big three – Germany, France, and Britain – failed to put their verbal support for the deal into action. 

The reciprocal measures are in compliance with paragraph 36 of the JCPOA.

MJ/PA

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