Synthesis of TBP-St-DVB Extraction Resin and Radiochemical Separation of 67Ga from Zinc Target by Extraction Chromatography


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67Ga is a medical radioisotope. 67Ga is synthesized by irradiating a zinc target in an accelerator or reactor. The half-life of 67 Ga is 78.3 h, and the energy of gamma rays emitted during decay is 93, 184, 206, 296, 398, 490, and 870 keV, respectively.

Material separation techniques using extraction resin are widely used for the separation of radioactive isotopes from aqueous solutions.

Emulsion membrane (ELM) technology using tri-butyl phosphate (TBP) was used to separate Ga from an acid leaching solution containing various other ions such as Fe, Co, Ni, Zn, Cd, Pb, Cu and Al.

We have already prepared different extraction resins by different methods and reported the selective separation of metals. However, up to now, there have been no published methods to determine the extraction equilibrium constant and adsorption band transfer rate in the separation of materials by extraction chromatography.

Our research group has laid a scientific, theoretical and experimental basis for the separation of medical radioactive isotopes, including 90Y, on the basis of the method of preparing the extraction resin and determining the extraction equilibrium constant and the rate of adsorption band transfer in the separation of metal ions since the last 2015.

We have recently synthesized a TBP-St-DVB, a kind of extraction resin, and established a method to separate 67Ga from the irradiated zinc target by extraction chromatography.

For this purpose, a St-DVB extraction resin containing 30%TBP was synthesized in a glass reactor equipped with a stirrer, a thermometer, and a reflux condenser, and 67GaCl3 solution of 40kBq/mL radioactivity was prepared from a zinc target irradiated in an accelerator MГЦ-20, and 67Ga was separated from a Zn+67Ga mixture solution on a chromatographic column filled with a TBP-St-DVB extraction resin.

We performed a quantitative and qualitative analysis of 67Ga with a 4096-channel analyzer Aptec coupled to a Ge(Li) semiconductor detector.

Extraction chromatogram
Figure. Extraction chromatogram of TBP-St-DVB extraction resin for 67Ga separation from irradiated nature Zn target

With established extraction chromatography, 67GaCl3 can be produced to meet nuclear medical requirements.

The results of this study were published in Springer's Journal of Radio-analytical and Nuclear Chemistry (2021), under the title of "Radiochemical separation of 67Ga from irradiated Zn target by TBP-St-DVB extraction chromatography" (