Radiochemistry - Resources

What I can do for you

The mission of the VUIIS Research Radiochemistry Core Laboratory is to help Vanderbilt Investigators:

(1) Conduct clinical trials that feature molecular imaging endpoints (2) Develop and translate novel radiopharmaceuticals to patients (3) Non-invasively visualize and quantify molecular events in patients and in preclinical in vivo models.



The Core Laboratory is housed within the VUMC PET center in Robinson Research Building. The laboratory consists of separate cGMP, preclinical, and research radiochemistry laboratories in contiguous space immediately adjacent to Vanderbilt’s cyclotron and Radiopharmacy. Using the GE 130 uA PETtrace, the Core can produce 18F, 11C, 68Ga, and 13N on a routine basis.  In addition to cyclotron-produced radionuclides produced at VUMC, the radiochemistry core has access to SPECT radionuclides and other positron emitters, including  99mTc, 111In, 123I, 64Cu, and 89Zr.


The Radiochemistry facility is located in the VUMC PET Center which houses the following:

  • GE 130 uA PETtrace – negative-ion cyclotron optimized for generating 18F, 11C, 68Ga, 13N, and related radionuclides 
  • 3 Von Gahlen hot cells (2 with CRL manipulators) and 4 Von Gahlen "dual mini-cells" dedicated to the production of tracers for both human and animal use
  • 2 Radiation Shielding hot cells with Tru-Motion manipulators dedicated to new tracer discovery and production of tracers for both human and animal use
  • 2 GE Tracerlab FX-FN fluorination modules
  • 1 GE Tracerlab FX-C Pro gas phase [11C] methyl iodide/methylation module 
  • 1 GE Tracerlab FX2N synthesis module
  • 1 GE FASTlab 2 synthesis module dedicated for [68Ga] labeling
  • 1 GE FASTlab 2 synthesis module
  • 1 GE Tracerlab MX synthesis module
  • 1 iPhase FlexLab synthesis module
  • 1 Sofie Elixis Flex/Chem synthesis module
  • 1 Bioscan Radio-TLC scanner
  • Multiple analytical and semi-prep HPLCs with radiometric detectors 
  • Multiple Capintec dose calibrators 
  • 5 Radiochemical fume hoods 

The PET-Chemistry Research Lab is connected to the cyclotron through lead-shielded lines allowing direct delivery of [18F] fluoride or [11C]carbon dioxide to shielded "hot cells" for production of radiotracers. 

Active Compounds/Tracers generated at VUIIS

Radionuclide Precursors and Intermediates:

[18F]F- in aqueous solution 
[68Ga]Cl3 in solution 
[11C]CO2 gas 
[11C]CH3I methyl iodide

[11C]CH3OTf methyl triflate 

Research Radiopharmaceuticals – Human (partial list)











Other tracers upon request; please contact Todd Peterson, Ph.D. (

Research Radiopharmaceuticals – Animal (partial list)



Clinical probe development; custom labeling; novel probe development; other tracers; please contact Todd Peterson, Ph.D. (