Functional sorbents for selective capture of plutonium, americium, uranium, and thorium in blood

Wassana Yantasee, Thanapon Sangvanich, Jeffery A. Creim, Kanda Pattamakomsan, Robert J. Wiacek, Glen E. Fryxell, R. Shane Addleman, Charles Timchalk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Self-assembled monolayer on mesoporous supports (SAMMS™) are hybrid materials created from attachment of organic moieties onto very high surface area mesoporous silica. SAMMS with surface chemistries including three isomers of hydroxypyridinone, diphosphonic acid, acetamide phosphonic acid, glycinyl urea, and diethylenetriamine pentaacetate (DTPA) analog were evaluated for chelation of actinides (239Pu, 241Am, uranium, thorium) from blood. Direct blood decorporation using sorbents does not have the toxicity or renal challenges associated with traditional chelation therapy and may have potential applications for critical exposure cases, reduction of nonspecific dose during actinide radiotherapy, and for sorbent hemoperfusion in renal insufficient patients, whose kidneys clear radionuclides at a very slow rate. Sorption affinity (Kd), sorption rate, selectivity, and stability of SAMMS were measured in batch contact experiments. An isomer of hydroxypyridinone (3,4-HOPO) on SAMMS demonstrated the highest affinity for all four actinides from blood and plasma and greatly outperformed the DTPA analog on SAMMS and commercial resins. In batch contact, a fifty percent reduction of actinides in blood was achieved within minutes, and there was no evidence of protein fouling or material leaching in blood after 24 h. The engineered form of SAMMS (bead format) was further evaluated in a 100-fold scaled-down hemoperfusion device and showed no blood clotting after 2 h. A 0.2 g quantity of SAMMS could reduce 50 wt.% of 100 ppb uranium in 50 mL of plasma in 18 min and that of 500 dpm mL -1 in 24 min. 3,4-HOPO-SAMMS has a long shelf-life in air and at room temperature for at least 8 y, indicating its feasibility for stockpiling in preparedness for an emergency. The excellent efficacy and stability of SAMMS materials in complex biological matrices suggest that SAMMS can also be used as orally administered drugs and for wound decontamination. By changing the organic groups of SAMMS, they can be used not only for actinides but also for other radionuclides. By using the mixture of these SAMMS materials, broad spectrum decorporation of radionuclides is very feasible.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)413-419
Number of pages7
JournalHealth Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2010


  • actinides
  • adsorption
  • radiological terrorism
  • uranium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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