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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 101-102

Nuclear Medicine in Finland

Molecular Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine, International Comprehensive Cancer Center Docrates, Saukonpaadenranta 2, FI-00180 Helsinki, Finland

Date of Web Publication10-Nov-2012

Correspondence Address:
Kalevi Kairemo
Molecular Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine, International Comprehensive Cancer Center Docrates, Saukonpaadenranta 2, FI-00180 Helsinki
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1450-1147.103406

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How to cite this article:
Kairemo K. Nuclear Medicine in Finland. World J Nucl Med 2012;11:101-2

How to cite this URL:
Kairemo K. Nuclear Medicine in Finland. World J Nucl Med [serial online] 2012 [cited 2022 Oct 1];11:101-2. Available from: http://www.wjnm.org/text.asp?2012/11/3/101/103406

The Finnish Society of Nuclear Medicine was founded in 1959, but practical work in nuclear medicine started more than 10 years earlier. The first in vitro studies in late 40's were performed to study P-32 distribution in serum in hepatic diseases. [1] The first thesis was to study TSH with P-32 as indicator of the thyroid response to the hormone. [2] I-131 was also introduced for diagnostic purposes in the same year. The first treatment for toxic goiter was given in 1954 in Maria Hospital in Helsinki, and this was the beginning of radionuclide therapy in Finland. [1]

In Finland (population 5.3 millions) there are five university hospitals with full nuclear medicine services, all of which are equipped with PET/CT. One of the leading European radiopharmaceutical companies, MAP Medical Technologies Oy, has three production sites in Finland, so the access to the radiopharmaceuticals is good in spite of long distances within the country. There is nuclear medicine activity in approximately 40 laboratories in Finland. The cyclotron facilities for radiopharmaceutical production are located in Turku and Helsinki.

Nuclear medicine research has been active throughout the years in Finland, but it has been focusing to Turku, Kuopio and Helsinki.

Turku is internationally known for its PET Center. They installed their first multipurpose 20 MeV cyclotron in 1974. As early as 1980, they had developed a target for 11 CO 2 production [3] and two years later 18 F(F 2 ) production. [4] They got their first whole body PET-scanner in Turku in 1988, after that a revolution in clinical PET studies happened. At that time there were not many PET centers worldwide. Multiple clinical studies on neurotransmission, [5] cardiac [6] and tumor metabolism [7] and drug research were carried out in Turku, some of these were really breakthrough studies in clinical nuclear medicine. Now, there are 4 PET scanners, and excellent facilities for preclinical correlative imaging. The PET Center is very active in international collaboration globally; there is fruitful researcher exchange between multiple institutions in e.g., Europe, USA and Japan.

In Kuopio, substantial work has been carried out in receptor- and transmitter-binding radiopharmaceutical development, mainly for SPECT-imaging purposes. Radiochemistry development [8] and mathematical modeling [9] were the prerequisites for molecular nuclear medicine applications in cardiology, [10] neurology [11] and psychiatry. [12]

In Helsinki, in diagnostic nuclear medicine, early research focused on RIA methods. One of the early breakthroughs in 1975 was the establishment of a new method for radioiodination of proteins and peptides. [13] This led to multiple scintigraphic applications. [14] The clinical research in 80's and 90's focused on neurology [15] using various SPECT ligands and on oncology [16] using more than 20 different monoclonal antibodies. Substantial development in 80's was made in cell labeling methods. [17]

In radionuclide therapy in Finland, the next milestone since radioiodine was the introduction of 90 Y in the treatment of rheumatoid knee joints by Dr. Rekonen in 1972. [18] This was later continued by introducing another isotope, 165 Dy, by Dr. Hannelin. Sm-153-EDTMP therapy was brought by Dr. Kairemo to Finland from Australia in 1989, and early clinical trials were started in 1990. [19] Radioimmunotherapy was introduced in Finland in 1994 for treating successfully intraperitoneal carcinomatoses, and for this purpose 3-D-dosimetry program was developed. [20] An interesting approach has been radiochemotherapy in head and neck cancer using In-111-BLMC, a tumor-targeting synergistically cytotoxic and radiotoxic compound, which was used in clinical trials. [21] This invention led to multiple inventions of creating multi-potential intelligent targeted nanoparticles for drug delivery. [22] Radioimmunotherapy was also applied clinical pediatric oncology, e.g., for treating hepatoblastoma. [23] Peptide receptor therapy was initiated in Finland in 2000, and practical 4-D dosimetry routine applications of Lu-177 treatments was introduced in 2010. [24]

World Association of Radiopharmaceutical and Molecular Therapy (WARMTH) has successfully organized 6 International Conferences at locations like Limassol-2005 (Cyprus), Ulaan Baatar-2007 (Mongolia), Goa-2008 (India), Cartagena-2009 (Colombia), Cape Town-2010 (South Africa), Kuwait-2011 (workshop) and Ho Chi Minh City-2011 (Vietnam). Now, the 7 th International Conference on Radiopharmaceutical Therapy (ICRT-2012) will be held in Levi, Finnish Lapland from 25-29 November 2012. All the local organizers look forward welcoming you in Finnish Lapland at the WARMTH Congress.

   References Top

1.Bergström KA, Härkönen R, Kairemo K, Karonen SL, Knuuti J, Kuikka JT, et al. The development of nuclear medicine in Finland: A review on the occasion of the 40 th anniversary of the Finnish Society of Nuclear Medicine. Clin Physiol 2000;20:317-29.  Back to cited text no. 1
2.Lamberg BA. Radioactive phosphorus as indicator in chick assay of thyrotropic hormone. Thesis. University of Helsinki, Finland, 1953.  Back to cited text no. 2
3.Keinänen M, Kuikka J, Heselius SJ, Suolinna EM, Solin O, Långström B, et al. Transcapillary exchange and distribution of carbon-11 labelled ethanol in the isolated perfused rat liver. Acta Physiol Scand 1980;110:39-46.  Back to cited text no. 3
4.Heselius SJ, Lindblom P, Solin O. Optical studies of the influence of an intense ion beam on hogh-pressure gas targets. Int J Appl Radiat Isot 1982;33:653-7.  Back to cited text no. 4
5.Rinne JO, Laihinen A, Någren K, Bergman J, Solin O, Haaparanta M, et al. PET demonstrates different behaviour of striatal dopamine D-1 and D-2 receptors in early Parkinson's disease. J Neurosci Res 1990;27:494-9.  Back to cited text no. 5
6.Knuuti MJ, Nuutila P, Ruotsalainen U, Saraste M, Härkönen R, Ahonen A, et al. Euglycemic hyperinsulinemic clamp and oral glucose load in stimulating myocardial glucose utilization during positron emission tomography. J Nucl Med 1992;33:1255-62.  Back to cited text no. 6
7.Leskinen-Kallio S, Någren K, Lehikoinen P, Ruotsalainen U, Joensuu H. Uptake of 11C-methionine in breast cancer studied by PET. An association with the size of S-phase fraction. Br J Cancer 1991;64:1121-4.  Back to cited text no. 7
8.Bergström KA, Halldin C, Hall H, Lundkvist C, Ginovart N, Swahn CG, et al. In vitro and in vivo characterisation of nor-beta-CIT: A potential radioligand for visualisation of the serotonin transporter in the brain. Eur J Nucl Med 1997;24:596-601.  Back to cited text no. 8
9.Kuikka JT, Bassingthwaighte JB, Henrich MM, Feinendegen LE. Mathematical modelling in nuclear medicine. Eur J Nucl Med 1991;18:351-62.  Back to cited text no. 9
10.Mäntysaari M, Kuikka J, Mustonen J, Tahvanainen K, Vanninen E, Länsimies E, et al. Noninvasive detection of cardiac sympathetic nervous dysfunction in diabetic patients using [ 123 I]metaiodobenzylguanidine. Diabetes 1992;41:1069-75.  Back to cited text no. 10
11.Laulumaa V, Kuikka JT, Soininen H, Bergström K, Länsimies E, Riekkinen P. Imaging of D2 dopamine receptors of patients with Parkinson's disease using single photon emission computed tomography and iodobenzamide I 123 . Arch Neurol 1993;50:509-12.  Back to cited text no. 11
12.Tiihonen J, Kuikka J, Bergström K, Hakola P, Karhu J, Ryynänen OP, et al. Altered striatal dopamine re-uptake site densities in habitually violent and non-violent alcoholics. Nat Med 1995;1:654-7.  Back to cited text no. 12
13.Karonen SL, Mörsky P, Siren M, Söderling U. An enzymatic solid-phase method for trace iodination of proteins and peptides with 125-iodine. Anal Biochem 1975;67:1-10.  Back to cited text no. 13
14.Kairento AL, Karonen SL, Adlercreutz H. Use of hormone receptors in scintigraphy of the ovaries. Eur J Nucl Med 1981;6:107-10.  Back to cited text no. 14
15.Launes J, Nikkinen P, Lindroth L, Brownell AL, Liewendahl K, Iivanainen M. Diagnosis of acute herpes simplex encephalitis by brain perfusion single photon emission computed tomography. Lancet 1988;1:1188-91.  Back to cited text no. 15
16.Kairemo KJA, Liewendahl K. Radioimmunodetection of malignant solid tumours. Scand J Clin Lab Invest 1994;54:569-83.  Back to cited text no. 16
17.Syrjälä MT, Valtonen V, Liewendahl K, Myllylä G. Diagnostic significance of indium-111 granulocyte scintigraphy in febrile patients. J Nucl Med 1987;28:155-60.  Back to cited text no. 17
18.de la Chapelle A, Rekonen A, Oka M, Ruotsi A. Chromosome damage after intra-articular injections of radioactive yttrium. Effect of immobilization on the biological dose. Ann Rheum Dis 1972;31:508-12.  Back to cited text no. 18
19.Ahonen A, Joensuu H, Hiltunen J, Hannelin M, Heikkilä J, Jakobsson M, et al. Samarium-153-EDTMP in bone metastases. J Nucl Biol Med 1994;38:123-7.  Back to cited text no. 19
20.Laitinen JO, Kairemo KJ, Jekunen AP, Korppi-Tommola T, Tenhunen M. The effect of three dimensional activity distribution on the dose planning of radioimmunotherapy for patients with advanced intraperitoneal pseudomyxoma. Cancer 1997;80:2545-52.  Back to cited text no. 20
21.Kairemo KJ, Ramsay HA, Tagesson M, Jekunen AP, Paavonen TK, Jääskelä-Saari HA, et al. Indium-111 bleomycin complex for radiochemotherapy of head and neck cancer-dosimetric and biokinetic aspects. Eur J Nucl Med 1996;23:631-8.  Back to cited text no. 21
22.Penate Medina O, Haikola M, Tahtinen M, Simpura I, Kaukinen S, Valtanen H, et al. Liposomal Tumor Targeting in Drug Delivery Utilizing MMP-2- and MMP-9-Binding Ligands. J Drug Deliv 2011;2011:160515.  Back to cited text no. 22
23.Kairemo KJ, Lindahl H, Merenmies J, Föhr A, Nikkinen P, Karonen SL, et al. Anti-alpha-fetoprotein imaging is useful for staging hepatoblastoma. Transplantation 2002;73:1151-4.  Back to cited text no. 23
24.Kairemo K, Kangasmäki A. 4D SPECT/CT acquisition for 3D dose calculation and dose planning in ( 177 )lu-peptide receptor radionuclide therapy: Applications for clinical routine. Recent Results Cancer Res 2012;194:537-50.  Back to cited text no. 24


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