Bruce Power announces production of new medical isotope

Bruce Power has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Boston Scientific to explore the feasibility of producing cancer-fighting yttrium-90. From left are Bruce, Grey, Owen Sound MPP Rick Byers, Kinectrics CEO David Harris, Framatome CEO Curtis Van Cleve, Saugeen First Nation Chief Conrad Ritchie, Bruce Power President and CEO Mike Rencheck, Minister of Energy Todd Smith, Bruce Power Head of Corporate Affairs Pat Dalzell and Bruce Power Senior Vice-President, Operational Services and Business Development Jennifer Edey.

Bruce Power is now able to reliably produce Yttrium-90, a medical isotope used in the treatment of liver cancer. 

“It’s another breakthrough treatment that we’re working on here in Canada that we’ll be able to ship around the world to patients. About 800,000 people a year get diagnosed with liver cancer, and with this treatment, we can provide them hope with a cure,” said  Bruce Power President and CEO, Mike Rencheck.

Rencheck says Bruce Power has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Boston Scientific, who will use the isotopes in their cancer fighting technology. 

“The exact treatment of Boston Scientific is called ‘TheraSphere’, where they actually attach the treatment directly into a cancer cell in your liver. That irradiation then kills the cancer cell specifically, and doesn’t damage any other cells around it. It’s a very effective treatment,” added Rencheck. 

Ontario’s Minister of Energy, MPP Todd Smith, says it’s great to see Ontario’s leading energy producer make such waves in the medical community as well. 

“It’s great that Bruce Power is on the forefront of a number of new technologies, but this Yttrium-90 product is going to help a lot of people that have been diagnosed with liver cancer get the treatment they need,” said Smith. 

Bruce Power is already a leading producer of Cobalt-60, which is used to sterilize approximately 40 percent of the world’s single-use medical devices, and will soon commercially produce Lutetium-177, which is used to treat prostate cancer.