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Strontium-89, 89Sr
Namesstrontium-89, Sr-89
Nuclide data
Natural abundancesyn
Half-life50.57 days
Decay products89Y
Decay modes
Decay modeDecay energy (MeV)
Beta decay1.492[1]
Isotopes of strontium
Complete table of nuclides

Strontium-89 (89
) is a radioactive isotope of strontium produced by nuclear fission, with a half-life of 50.57 days. It undergoes β decay into yttrium-89. Strontium-89 has an application in medicine.[2]


It was used for the first time by Belgian scientist Charles Pecher.[3][4] Pecher filed a patent in May 1941 for the synthesis of strontium-89 and yttrium-86 using cyclotrons and described the use of strontium for therapeutic uses.[5]

Physiological effects and medical use

Metastron, a preparation of strontium-89 chloride made by GE Healthcare and used for purposes such as prostate cancer treatment.[6]

Strontium belongs to the same periodic family as calcium (alkaline earth metals), and is metabolised in a similar fashion. 89Sr, used in the treatment of osseous (bony) metastases preferentially targets metabolically active regions of the bone.[7][8]

As such, intravenous or intracavity administration of 89Sr may be helpful in the palliation of painful bony metastases, as it allows for targeted radiation to metastatic lesions, inducing apoptosis of cells, membrane and protein damage. Subsequently, bone pain resulting from cytokine release at the site of lesions, bone-associated nerve compression and stretching of the periosteum may be reduced. Treatment with 89Sr has been particularly effective in patients with hormonally-resistant prostate cancer, often leading to a decreased requirement for opioid analgesics, an increase in time until further radiation, and a decrease in tumour markers.

It is an artificial radioisotope which is used in treatment of bone cancer. In circumstances where cancer patients have widespread and painful bony metastases, the administration of 89Sr results in the delivery of beta particles directly to the area of bony problem, where calcium turnover is greatest.[9]

See also


  1. ^ Delacroix, D.; Guerre, J. P.; Leblanc, P.; Hickman, C. (1 January 2002). "Radionuclide and Radiation Protection Data Handbook 2002". Radiation Protection Dosimetry. 98 (1): 79. doi:10.1093/oxfordjournals.rpd.a006705.
  2. ^ Audi, Georges; Wapstra, Aaldert Hendrik; Thibault, Catherne; Blachot, Jean; Bersillon, Olivier (2003). "The NUBASE evaluation of nuclear and decay properties" (PDF). Nuclear Physics A. 729 (1): 3–128. Bibcode:2003NuPhA.729....3A. CiteSeerX doi:10.1016/j.nuclphysa.2003.11.001. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-20.
  3. ^ Pecher, Charles (1941). "Biological Investigations with Radioactive Calcium and Strontium". Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine. 46 (1): 86–91. doi:10.3181/00379727-46-11899. ISSN 0037-9727.
  4. ^ Pecher, Charles (1942). Biological investigations with radioactive calcium and strontium; preliminary report on the use of radioactive strontium in the treatment of metastatic bone cancer. 2. University of California Publications in Pharmacology. pp. 117–150. OCLC 7837554.
  5. ^ US 2302470, Pecher, Charles, "Material and method for radiography", published 1941-05-14 
  6. ^ "Strontium 89 (Metastron™) treatment". QEH Birmingham. NHS. Retrieved 23 November 2015.
  7. ^ Halperin, Edward C.; Perez, Carlos A.; Brady, Luther W. (2008). Perez and Brady's principles and practice of radiation oncology. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. pp. 1997–. ISBN 978-0-7817-6369-1. Retrieved 19 July 2011.
  8. ^ Bauman, Glenn; Charette, Manya; Reid, Robert; Sathya, Jinka (2005). "Radiopharmaceuticals for the palliation of painful bone metastases—a systematic review". Radiotherapy and Oncology. 75 (3): 258.E1–258.E13. doi:10.1016/j.radonc.2005.03.003. ISSN 0167-8140. PMID 16299924.
  9. ^ Mertens, W. C.; Filipczak, L. A.; Ben-Josef, E.; Davis, L. P.; Porter, A. T. (1998). "Systemic bone-seeking radionuclides for palliation of painful osseous metastases: current concepts". CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. 48 (6): 361–374. doi:10.3322/canjclin.48.6.361. ISSN 0007-9235.