Gamma radiation effects on AG MP-50 cation exchange resin and sulfonated activated carbon for bismuth-213 separation

Hongshan Zhu, Stephan Heinitz, Samuel Eyley, Wim Thielemans, Elien Derveaux, Peter Adriaensens, Koen Binnemans, Steven Mullens, Thomas Cardinaels

Research outputpeer-review


Medical 225Ac/213Bi radionuclide generators are designed to provide a local supply of the short-lived 213Bi for cancer treatment. However, radiation-induced damage to the sorbents commonly used in such radionuclide generators remains a major concern. In this study, the effects of gamma radiation on AG MP-50 cation exchange resin and sulfonated activated carbon (SAC) were studied by analyzing the changes in the morphological characteristics, functional groups, and the La3+/Bi3+ sorption performance, with La3+ being a suitable non-radioactive substitute for Ac3+. The surface sulfonic acid groups of AG MP-50 resin suffered from severe radiation-induced degradation, while the particle morphology was changed markedly after being exposed to absorbed doses of approximately 11 MGy. As a result, the sorption performance of irradiated AG MP-50 for La3+ and Bi3+ was significantly decreased with increasing absorbed doses. In contrast, no apparent changes in acquired morphological characteristics were observed for pristine and irradiated SAC based on SEM and XRD characterization. The surface oxygen content (e.g., O–CO) of irradiated SAC increased for an absorbed dose of 11 MGy due to free radical-induced oxidation. The sorption performance of pristine and irradiated SAC materials for La3+ and Bi3+ remained generally the same at pH values of 1 and 2. Furthermore, the applicability of AG MP-50 and SAC in the 225Ac/213Bi generators was illustrated in terms of their radiolytic stability. This study provides further evidence for the practical implementation of both AG MP-50 and SAC in 225Ac/213Bi radionuclide generators.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)30990-31001
Number of pages12
JournalRSC Advances
Issue number44
StatePublished - 24 Oct 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering

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