Realizing the potential of the Actinium-225 radionuclide generator in targeted alpha particle therapy applications

Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2008 Sep;60(12):1371-82. doi: 10.1016/j.addr.2008.04.009. Epub 2008 Apr 23.


Alpha particle-emitting isotopes have been proposed as novel cytotoxic agents for augmenting targeted therapy. Properties of alpha particle radiation such as their limited range in tissue of a few cell diameters and their high linear energy transfer leading to dense radiation damage along each alpha track are promising in the treatment of cancer, especially when single cells or clusters of tumor cells are targeted. Actinium-225 (225 Ac) is an alpha particle-emitting radionuclide that generates 4 net alpha particle isotopes in a short decay chain to stable 209 Bi, and as such can be described as an alpha particle nanogenerator. This article reviews the literature pertaining to the research, development, and utilization of targeted 225 Ac to potently and specifically affect cancer.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Actinium / pharmacokinetics
  • Actinium / therapeutic use*
  • Alpha Particles / therapeutic use*
  • Animals
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Humans
  • Radiometry
  • Radionuclide Generators*
  • Tissue Distribution


  • Actinium