Squibb "Technetope" Tc-99m Generator (1967)
The Squibb Pharmaceuticals "Technetope" can be considered one of the first of the modern technetium-99m generators. Among the advantages that it had over other generators were the facts that it was sterilized by autoclaving and not pyrogenic materials that would cause an adverse reaction in the patient, that it provided constant shielding during elution, and that it employed a positive pressure system for elution. This particular example was a prototype that was sent to the Food and Drug Administration as part of the approval process.
Tc-99m is a versatile scanning agent that is often considered the workhorse of nuclear medicine. It is obtained by elution from a generator ("cow") that contains the radioactive parent of Tc-99m, molybdenum 99.
The generator is simply a column containing a resin to which Mo-99 is attached. The Mo-99 decays to produce the short-lived Tc-99m (6 hr half-life). To obtain the Tc-99m, a solution (the eluent) is injected into the top of the column—the shield plug for the top of the column can be seen in the two photos to the right. The Tc-99m comes out the bottom of the column into the sterile collecting vial seen in the above photo. The collecting vial has a short breather needle to allow air out of the vial as the eluent and Tc-99m enter.
At the time that the generator was delivered to the hospital, usually once a week, the generator would contain 50 to 300 millicuries of Mo-99.
Donated by the FDA courtesy of Ed Tupin.
- Squibb Radiopharmaceuticals Booklet for the Technetope. Date July 1967.
- Squibb Radiopharmaceuticals Booklet for the Technetope. Date May 1967.