March 9, 2023, El Alto, Bolivia – A unique for Latin America complex for radiopharmaceuticals production buit by Rosatom by order of the Bolivian Nuclear Energy Agency (ABEN), has started supplies of radiopharmaceuticals to the network of the Bolivian nuclear medicine centers. The ceremony of the beginning of supplies of the radiopharmaceutical fluodeoxyglucose took place in the Nuclear Medicine and Radiotherapy Center designed for treatment of patients with cancer.
The President of the Plurinational State of Bolivia Luis Alberto Arce Catacora attended the ceremony.
The Cyclotron Complex is part of the Center for Nuclear Technology Research and Development (CNTRD), the landmark project implemented in the framework of the bilateral cooperation between Russia and Bolivia. The CNTRD is being constructed in El Alto, at an altitude of 4000 meters above the sea level. The facility benefits national healthcare system as it provides domestic production of the whole range of radiopharmaceuticals required for clinical examination of over 5000 patients a year. This means that the Bolivian citizens in need of advanced and timely nuclear diagnostics won't have to go abroad to receive it. In future, the facility will allow to substitute all the radiopharmaceuticals which Bolivia now has to import.
“Today our country has made a great step forward. From now on, not only do we have a nuclear medicine center with the most advanced infrastructure, but also, we can produce our own radiopharmaceuticals for cancer diagnostics, which until today we have had to import. Currently, Bolivia has such advanced technologies that we may even consider exporting radiopharmaceuticals to our neighboring countries. From now on, we will be able to fight cancer even more effectively!”, said Luis Alberto Arce Catacora, President of the Plurinational State of Bolivia.
“The first construction stage facilities of the Center for Nuclear Technology Research and Development being built by Rosatom in El Alto are already bringing practical benefits to the people of the Plurinational State of Bolivia. We have seen a great example of it today, when the first patients received radiopharmaceuticals produced in the new Cyclotron Complex. Together with our Bolivian partners, we have done tremendous work. The next stage is to expand the range of radiopharmaceuticals and export these medical products to the neighbouring countries. With the help of Rosatom's specialists, Bolivia is now becoming one of the region’s leaders in the field of nuclear technology application," said Kirill Komarov, the First Deputy Director General for Development and International Business of ROSATOM.
The Center for Nuclear Technology Research and Development (CNTRD) in El Alto, Bolivia, is an innovative project that brings together cutting-edge nuclear technologies for healthcare, agriculture and many other sectors. The 1st and 2nd construction stage facilities, the Cyclotron-Radiopharmacological-Preclinical Complex, (CRPC), and the Multipurpose Irradiation Center (MIC), have already been implemented. At the same time, construction and installation work is ongoing for stages 3 and 4, which include the research reactor and laboratory buildings. Summer 2021 saw the momentous, first concrete pour ceremony for the building that will house the first research reactor in Bolivia. The target completion date for the project is set for 2025.
The CNTRD project is crucial to develop cooperation between Russia and Latin American countries in high technologies and to strengthen Rosatom position in the global market. The contract for the construction of the CNTRD was signed in 2017 between the State Specialized Design Institute (GSPI JSC, Rosatom subsidiary) and the Bolivian Nuclear Energy Agency (ABEN). Apart from the radiopharmaceuticals production complex, the CNTRD comprises the research reactor that will allowing to perform a whole range of scientific research as well as radioisotopes production. The project also comprises a laboratory complex and the Multipurpose Irradiation Center for agricultural products treatment/shelf life extension and medical devices sterilisation.