Uses of IBC’s MRT™ products, processes and services are found in a number of life science applications, including the following: Applications of MRT™ in targeted alpha therapy (TAT), brachytherapy and enantiomeric separations are described below.

Targeted Alpha Therapy (TAT)

Targeted alpha therapy (TAT) is a cancer therapy that targets and delivers a lethal dose of alpha radiation to a tumor, with minimal impact on healthy tissue.

Radiopharmaceuticals consist of a radioactive molecule, a targeting molecule, and a linker that joins the two.
Credit: National Cancer Institute

An alpha emitting radioisotope is incorporated into a radioconjugate, a type of radiopharmaceutical  composed of the radioisotope, a chelating agent that strongly binds the radioisotope forming a radioactive compound, a linker and a targeting molecule. These drugs are revolutionizing the treatment of cancer by working at the cellular level to target specific cancer cells with massive radiation doses that have minimal effect on adjacent healthy cells. Therapeutic radionuclides of interest for TAT include actinium-225, astatine-211, bismuth-212, bismuth-213, lead-212, radium-223, terbium-149 and thorium-227. High purity is critical for these radionuclides because they are used to treat humans and impurities can be dangerous. For example, some impurity radionuclides might emit beta  radiation that could cause severe damage to surrounding tissue. IBC applies its expertise in highly selective radionuclide separations and finely tuned organic chemistry synthesis to supply key components of radioconjugates including highly purified radioactive isotopes and strongly binding chelating agents, such as macrocycles.

The supply of therapeutic radionuclides for TAT is extremely constrained making it essential to preserve these scarce resources by efficiently recovering them at very high levels from the complex matrices in which they are found using highly selective MRT™ processes. See why actinium-225, perhaps the most promising radionuclide for TAT, has been called the “rarest drug on earth,” in this explanatory video:

IBC’s proprietary technology for the highly selective separation and recovery of actinium-225 at 99.99% purity is being deployed to greatly increase the supply of actinium-225. MRT™ selectively separates actinium-225 at very high recovery rates and very high purity from complex matrices, thereby providing a reliable supply of this critical radionuclide to support the widespread development and use of targeted alpha therapy.


Brachytherapy is a form of radiotherapy where a sealed radiation source is placed inside or next to the area requiring treatment. It is commonly used to treat cancer, especially prostate cancer by the insertion of radioactive palladium-103 (Pd-103) seeds directly into the tissue.

MRT™ is used to separate and recover Pd-103 from a complex matrix in which it is present and purifies it prior to preparing the seeds involved in the treatment. High purity Pd-103, essential in this application, is easily obtained. MRT™ has distinct advantages over competing processes including high selectivity and recovery for Pd-103, elimination of steps and reagents, and minimal waste generation.

Enantiomeric Separations

High purity of separated enantiomers is essential since the individual enantiomers have quite different properties, some of which can have negative human health consequences. Highly selective (>99%), non-chromatographic separation of chiral molecules is achieved using IBC’s ChiraLig™ MRT™ products.