An important reason for the installation of a cyclotron at the campus of Radboudumc is that it enables the use of short living radionuclides. 13N (nitrogen-13) has a half-life of 10 minutes and can therefore not be obtained from external sources.
[N-13]NH3 is used to quantify the perfusion of the cardiac muscle. Since it is a small molecule, having a high diffusion speed, it can easily reach the capillaries of the heart. This provides valuable diagnostic information in patients with heart complaints that cannot be explained by coronary dysfunction. Previously it was difficult to find the cause of these complaints.