[Cytometry] Sorting Radioactive Cells

Joanne Lannigan jl7fj at virginia.edu
Tue Feb 16 16:28:14 EST 2010

Dear Flowers:

First excuse me if this has already been discussed on the list, but I was
unable to search the archives (kept getting a server error). I have a client
who wants to sort radioactive cells. My first gut reaction was "no way"
which is what I told him, especially since we are not approved for use of
radioactivity in our labs. Persistence, including help to get us approved
for radioactive use, has this discussion still going. Supposedly, these
radioactive compounds have a very short half life (minutes) and would be
completely non-radioactive within 24 hours. I was wondering if anyone sorts
radioactive cells and if so what types of precautions do you take? I expect
that in addition to the instrument being completely decontaminated so not to
contaminate other sort samples with radioactivity, we must also consider the
personal biohazards of exposure to radioactive aerosols. Would the typical
PAPR respirators and a hood be adequate protection? I would appreciate any
input from those who have grappled with this issue before.

Thanks, in advance-Joanne


Joanne Lannigan, MS

Director, Flow Cytometry Core Facility

University of Virginia

Jordan Hall, Room 7067

P.O. Box 800734

Charlottesville, VA 22908-0734

Office: 434-924-0274

Lab: 434-243-2695

Fax: 434-982-1071

email: joannelannigan at virginia.edu

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