Canada sees isotope cooperation during shutdown

Tue May 19, 2009 2:47pm EDT
 
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada, reacting to the month-long shutdown of a nuclear reactor in Ontario that produces a third of the world's medical isotopes, said on Tuesday that major isotope producers were addressing the problem of a possible supply shortage cooperatively.

"A secure supply of medical isotopes is not only an issue for Canada; it is an international issue that is being addressed cooperatively by all isotope-producing countries," federal Natural Resources Minister Lisa Raitt said.

She said the government was engaging international isotope producers as well as companies such as MDS Nordion, the privately held firm Lantheus, and Covidien Ltd, which she said play key roles in securing medical isotope supply for North America.

(Reporting by Randall Palmer; editing by Peter Galloway)