Strategic collaboration signed to support the development of radiopharmaceuticals in the fight against cancer
Chicago, IL, USA, June 26, 2023, TerraPower Isotopes and PanTera, the Belgian joint venture created by SCK CEN and IBA, announced today that they have signed a strategic collaboration to increase the global availability of actinium-225 (225Ac), a radioisotope that has the potential to treat a large variety of cancer indications. The companies will work together to increase near-term production of 225Ac to support ongoing clinical trials and to ensure the large-scale supply of the radioisotope in the long term, addressing growing global demand.
This collaboration will not have any immediate financial impact but has the potential to bring substantial revenues in the future to PanTera and, indirectly, to its two shareholders SCK CEN and IBA, a listed company on the Brussels stock exchange.
Under this collaboration, both companies will use TerraPower Isotope’s natural decay method based on thorium-229 (229Th) and PanTera’s “Gamma route” based on the Rhodotron® and radium-226 to produce 225Ac.
225Ac is a promising alpha emitter for use in Targeted Alpha Therapy (TAT). A series of molecules that are currently under research, combined with 225Ac through further manufacturing, have the potential to treat a variety of cancers, targeting solid tumors, metastases, and systemic cancers such as leukemia. There are several clinical studies currently in progress, ranging from preclinical development through to phase 3 clinical trials. Whilst there is high demand, there is a scarcity of 225Ac. The collaboration between PanTera and TerraPower Isotopes is seeking to address this supply issue and support the clinical development of 225Ac based drugs as a potential treatment option for cancer.
“We are excited to join forces with TerraPower Isotopes to increase the market availability of 225Ac. While continuing to prepare our unique technology for large-scale production of 225Ac, as from 2024 we will also offer the radioisotope to drug developers for their research and clinical trials, as well as to physicians for compassionate use. This volume would be equivalent to 50% of today’s supply and would underpin the wider development of these targeted alpha therapy radiopharmaceuticals as an effective treatment modality for cancer”, commented Sven Van den Berghe, PanTera’s Chief Executive Officer.
Scott Claunch, President of TerraPower Isotopes, added: “Consistent with TerraPower’s vision of developing innovative solutions to help fight disease using nuclear science, TerraPower Isotopes is thrilled to secure this collaboration with PanTera. Demand for 225Ac is expected to increase as more radiopharmaceutical treatments using 225Ac are developed to treat a variety of different types of cancers. This collaboration will help us supply this valuable material to the pharmaceutical industry and meet the growing global demand.”
 TerraPower Isotopes produced Actinium-225 is intended to be used as starting material for further manufacturing processes and, as starting material, is not manufactured in accordance with current good manufacturing practices.
PanTera, an IBA and SCK CEN joint-venture, aims to secure the large-scale production of actinium-225 (225Ac), one of the most promising alpha-emitting radioisotopes to fight cancers by Targeted RadioTherapy (TRT). By working towards this large-scale production, PanTera’s ultimate goal is to improve the accessibility of future innovative cancer therapy based on 225Ac and theranostics in general. Learn More about PanTera on IBA booth #3023 at SNMMI 2023 Annual Meeting in Chicago, Il, USA from June 24 to June 27, 2023.
TerraPower is a leading nuclear innovation company that strives to improve the world through nuclear energy and science. Since it was founded by Bill Gates and a group of like-minded visionaries, TerraPower has emerged as an incubator and developer of ideas and technologies that offer energy independence, environmental sustainability, medical advancement and other cutting-edge opportunities. It accepts and tackles some of the world’s most difficult challenges. Behind each of its innovations and programs, TerraPower actively works to bring together the strengths and experiences of the world’s public and private sectors to use advanced nuclear to answer pressing global needs. Learn more at https://www.terrapower.com/.
IBA (Ion Beam Applications S.A.) is the world leader in particle accelerator technology. The company is the leading supplier of equipment and services in the field of proton therapy, considered to be the most advanced form of radiation therapy available today. IBA is also a leading player in the fields of industrial sterilization, radiopharmaceuticals and dosimetry. The company, based in Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium, employs approximately 1,800 people worldwide. IBA is a certified B Corporation (B Corp) meeting the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance.
IBA is listed on the pan-European stock exchange EURONEXT (IBA: Reuters IBAB.BR and Bloomberg IBAB.BB).
More information can be found at: www.iba-worldwide.com
About SCK CEN
70 years of experience in nuclear research and technology
SCK CEN is one of the largest research institutions in Belgium. Every day, more than 900 employees dedicate themselves to developing peaceful applications of radioactivity. SCK CEN's research activities focus on three main areas: innovative nuclear systems, nuclear waste management and dismantling, and the resolute fight against cancer. World-renowned, SCK CEN shares its knowledge through countless publications and training courses, so that this pool of exceptional competence can be maintained.
For more information, please visit www.sckcen.be