Radiopharmaceutics & PET Radiochemistry

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					School of Medicine at Guy’s, King’s College and St Thomas’ Hospitals

Radiopharmaceutics & PET Radiochemistry

Welcome to King’s
King’s College London is one of the world’s top 25 universities* and has an outstanding reputation for both teaching and research.
Welcome to King’s 2 Introducing the School of Medicine 3 Radiochemistry at King’s 4-5

Founded in 1829, King’s is England’s fourth-oldest university institution and one of the two founding colleges of the University of London. We occupy four campuses along the River Thames in the heart of London with a further campus in south east London. King’s is a multi-faculty institution, with teaching and research extending across the sciences, humanities, medicine, law, dentistry and social sciences. As a member of the Russell Group (a coalition of the UK’s major research universities), King’s is in the top group of universities for research earnings. Our status as the leading university in the UK for biomedical research has been boosted by being the only university to host five Medical Research Council (MRC) centres: more than any other university. King’s is in the final stages of a £400 million upgrading programme which is transforming our estate. This is the most ambitious and farreaching redevelopment programme recently undertaken by a UK university, and will provide greatly improved libraries, teaching and research rooms, laboratories and social space for students and staff. Our Graduate School coordinates all aspects of graduate provision at King’s. It ensures the needs of students are heard at all levels of decision-making and delivers a series of training and skills courses specifically for our graduate community.

Radiopharmaceutics & PET Radiochemistry MSc 6-7 Programme details Why choose King’s? Find out more 8-9 10-11 12

Our Partner Trusts
• Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust • King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust • The South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Join Europe’s largest centre for healthcare education King’s College London has nine Schools of study, incorporating five Health Schools that together form Europe’s largest centre for professional healthcare education. Through the integration of clinical services, research and teaching with our Partner NHS Trusts, we are committed to discovering and sharing knowledge to shape the future of healthcare locally and internationally. As the academic partner for three Department of Health ‘Research Centres of Excellence’, King’s is uniquely driving progress on innovation and translational research in biomedicine and NHS service quality and safety.


*The Times Higher World University Rankings (Fourth Edition)

Introducing the School of Medicine
The School of Medicine is one of five Health Schools at King’s College London and, with 700 staff and 2500 students, is one of the largest schools of medicine in the UK.
The School of Medicine is located on key hospital sites in London alongside our Partner NHS Trusts, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, which between them have over one million patient contacts per year. Together we pursue the joint aims of excellence in patient-centred research and in training tomorrow’s doctors. Our strong reputation ensures that we receive more applications for medicine than any other UK medical school. With a tradition of setting standards, we continue to influence and shape modern medical education – we currently offer the highest number of entry routes to the MBBS programme. Our taught master’s programmes are truly research-led. Our research programmes, organised within nine divisions, were all rated 5 or 5* in the last national Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), and we host prestigious MRC Centres in two areas of leading research: asthma and transplantation. As a result, our students enjoy opportunities to work alongside internationally renowned scientists and clinical practitioners.


Radiochemistry at King’s
Imaging Sciences is a cutting-edge research and teaching division at King’s and our main objective is to pursue high quality, multidisciplinary research in medical imaging at the leading edge internationally.
Our specialist areas include: cardiovascular imaging and intervention, molecular imaging and translational research, PET imaging, MR physics development, interventional radiology, nuclear medicine and osteoporosis, radiopharmaceutical chemistry and imaging chemistry. Whilst the division is organised around discrete activities and imaging modalities, synergy between these components is crucial and is exemplified by work on combined MRI and PET; molecular imaging work bridging NMR and PET; bone metabolism research drawing on the expertise of the Osteoporosis Unit, the PET Centre and Nuclear Medicine; and work on image guided intervention that draws on our expertise in cardiac MRI, acquisition methodology and image analysis. Over the past 20 years we have built up a critical mass of basic science and clinical research with an outward-looking approach that enables collaborative work that would not be possible in a less integrated setting. As well as close involvement with King’s partner NHS Trusts (Guy’s and St Thomas’, and King’s College Hospitals) we have strong links with several other hospitals and industry. In summer 2007 the entire Imaging Sciences Division moved to a purpose-built space at St Thomas’ Hospital, with laboratories for radiochemistry and radiobiology research as well as PET, SPECT and MR scanners.


Meet the Programme Director
Professor Phil Blower Chair of Imaging Chemistry ‘This MSc programme aims to train graduate chemists and pharmacists to become radiochemists and radiopharmacists, key roles needed in the emerging medical imaging specialities, such as PET, that are now becoming so important in healthcare. We set up the programme because of our own difficulties in recruitment: people with the necessary specialist skills are all too often lost down the ‘brain drain’ to highly paid jobs abroad. The programme is highly interdisciplinary and is taught by chemists, physicists, pharmacists, biologists and clinicians, all of whom are active professionals in research or clinical service in the field. The qualification can lead to work in hospitals, commercial cyclotron centres, or to PhD research opportunities. It is a mark of the importance of these skills to modern medicine that studentships and bursaries are available for this programme funded by EPSRC, Cancer Research UK, the British Nuclear Medicine Society, and major international medical imaging companies.’

Core teaching staff
• Professor Phil Blower, Chair of Imaging Chemistry, has more than 20 years experience in radiochemistry research supporting nuclear medicine and university teaching in chemistry and biochemistry. • Dr Jim Ballinger, Chief Hospital Radiopharmacist for Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, who is internationally respected both for his research and for running international courses in radiopharmacy. • Dr Paul Marsden, Reader in Medical Physics and Scientific Director of the PET Imaging Centre at St Thomas’ Hospital, with an international reputation in PET physics. • Dr Greg Mullen, Senior Lecturer in Imaging Biology, whose research interests lie in protein and cell based radiopharmaceuticals. • Dr Rick Southworth, Lecturer in Imaging Biology, an expert in the application of PET and magnetic resonance imaging to the study of cardiac biochemistry. • Dr Marcel Cleij, PET Radiochemist at the PET Imaging Centre.


& PET Radiochemistry MSc
‘This unique programme educates, trains and equips students to study for a PhD or to enter employment as radiopharmaceutical scientists in a PET radiochemistry centre (cyclotron unit) or in a radiopharmacy, providing diagnostic and therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals to nuclear medicine centres or specialised commercial centres.’
Programme overview Positron emission tomography (PET) is a diagnostic imaging technique used in many hospitals worldwide to provide services for patients, especially in the field of cancer medicine, and for research applications in drug development. It is revolutionising both of these fields, but its impact is limited by the worldwide shortage of radiochemistry skills needed to produce the radiotracers. This programme will give you the skills to fill the gap. The programme provides opportunities to develop and demonstrate knowledge, understanding and skills in the following areas: the principles and practice of radiopharmaceutical science; manufacturing and quality control; appreciation of the design and operation of accelerator machines including cyclotrons; synthesis of radiopharmaceuticals from cyclotronproduced radionuclides and application of radiopharmaceuticals in research and clinical nuclear medicine. The programme offers education and practical training in: fundamental nuclear science including cyclotron production of radionuclides, radiopharmaceutical chemistry and practice, design and manufacture of radiopharmaceuticals from generators and cyclotron-produced radionuclides, research methods and project design, radiation safety and applications to biomedical research and clinical practice. Graduates will be able to implement and develop medical radionuclide imaging and therapy services regionally, nationally and internationally. Distinctive features • This programme is a world first and is unique in leading to a master’s qualification in this field. • Teaching takes place on the doorstep of the Clinical PET Imaging Centre at St Thomas’ Hospital and students gain experience of radiopharmacy there and at other hospitals and industrial nuclear medicine/PET centres in London and further afield. • The programme is supported through studentships and other funding from the UK Research Councils, Cancer Research UK, and companies specialising in medical imaging. 6

Is this the right programme for you? This degree will provide you with the knowledge and skills required for: • managing radioisotope production using a cyclotron • managing radiopharmaceuticals according to current Good Manufacturing Practice • developing new radiopharmaceuticals and labelling methodologies • working as part of multidisciplinary team with staff from pharmacy, chemistry, pharmacology, medicine, nursing, engineering, medical physics and radiography • participating in cross-disciplinary R&D in PET/nuclear medicine or drug development • undertaking PhD research in the field Career prospects Employment may be in specialist PET centres in commercial or NHS settings or in the pharmaceutical industry. Graduates might find employment in a commercial or industrial cyclotron centre, producing radionuclides and radiopharmaceuticals for hospitals and the drug industry. This is a growing international industry facing a severe radiochemical skills shortage. There are also employment opportunities in NHS hospitals as a radiopharmacist or radiochemist, preparing radiopharmaceuticals and taking responsibility for quality control and radiopharmacy management. Other career paths include research and development in the radiopharmaceutical industry or the conventional drug industry, which is adopting PET as a major drug development tool. Graduates may also pursue academic research, leading to a PhD.


Programme details
Mode & duration One year full-time, two years part-time (day release, one day per week), September to September. Entry requirements Minimum 2:2 first degree, or overseas equivalent, in chemistry, chemical engineering, physics, pharmacy or biochemistry; other related subjects are considered on an individual basis where graduate practical experience is demonstrated. English language requirements IELTS 7.0 TOEFL 250/600/100 (computer/paper/internet) King’s Pre-sessional Summer Course for overseas students B Band To follow our programmes successfully, you must have a good command of English and be able to apply this in an academic environment. For more information on our requirements and King’s English Language Centre, please visit Programme structure Two study paths are offered: PET Radiochemistry, suitable for those interested in a research career in the field or work in a PET radiochemistry centre; and Radiopharmaceutical Science to suit those interested in a career in hospital radiopharmacy. Core modules • Radiopharmaceutical Science & Practice • Radiopharmacology


Optional modules (choose two) • Radiopharmaceutical Chemistry • Radiopharmaceutical Design, Formulation & Manufacturing • Radiopharmaceuticals in Practice (including a work experience placement) • Cyclotron Engineering & Nuclear Chemistry Research Project Students carry out a laboratory- or pratice-based research project. Laboratory-based projects will be on a placement basis in a PET centre, industry, radiopharmacy, or academic laboratory. Although most projects involve direct work with radiochemicals, direct handling of radioisotopes is not required provided the topic underpins radiopharmaceutical research (eg peptide synthesis or chelator synthesis). Assessment Assessment is by written examinations, workshops, practical laboratory work and reports, audio-visual presentations, and a laboratory or library-based research project.


Why choose King’s?
Student testimonials

‘As an overseas student, it was beneficial that the teaching staff were always ready to help. The modules are flexible and comprehensive and include up-to-date content.’ ‘The activities I found most beneficial have been the excursions to major sites and the experience gained through placements and projects.’ ‘The prospects of this course are high and more importantly its impact on medicine is, and will continue to be, incredibly valuable.’ ‘Throughout the duration of my first degree in Forensic Science, I had always been fascinated by the courses that dealt with drug discovery, medicinal chemistry and pharmacology. Enrolling in the MSc in Radiopharmaceutics & PET Radiochemistry was an ideal route into a career in this field. During my time on the course I developed a well-rounded perspective on how nuclear imaging works. The lectures gave me new knowledge of chemistry, radiochemistry and how the tracers are distributed and treated by the body. A two-week placement in the Radiopharmacy of the Kent and Canterbury Hospital gave me good knowledge of how the tracers produced in the research laboratory are applied in the hospital and patient environment. The course enabled me to pursue a PhD in this field and I am currently working on developing potential new imaging molecules.’
David Berry, PhD student


Enhancing the student experience King’s is committed to enhancing all aspects of the student experience and we offer a full range of student services. You will receive help and advice at every stage of the application process in areas including accommodation, finance and, for international students, entry clearance. We regularly review our services and act on feedback from our Students’ Union and a range of satisfaction surveys.

What others say

‘King’s College London enjoys by some distance the highest levels of student satisfaction with teaching quality and learning resources of any institution in the capital.’
Sunday Times University Guide 2006


Find out more
Sheila Foolheea Programme Administrator Radiopharmaceutics & PET Radiochemistry MSc Department of Imaging Sciences Rayne Institute 4th Floor Lambeth Wing St Thomas’ Hospital London SE1 7EH United Kingdom Tel: +44 (0)20 7188 5440 Email: Our online prospectus contains full programme descriptions, entry requirements and fee information For information on how to apply and our online application form Information and advice for international students about studying at King’s and living in London

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