Life Atomic: A History of Radioisotopes in Science and - download pdf or read online

By Angela N. H. Creager

ISBN-10: 022601780X

ISBN-13: 9780226017808

After global conflict II, the united states Atomic power fee (AEC) started mass-producing radioisotopes, sending out approximately 64,000 shipments of radioactive fabrics to scientists and physicians via 1955. whilst the atomic bomb turned the focal point of chilly warfare nervousness, radioisotopes represented the government’s efforts to harness the ability of the atom for peace—advancing drugs, family strength, and international relations.
In Life Atomic, Angela N. H. Creager tells the tale of ways those radioisotopes, which have been concurrently medical instruments and political icons, reworked biomedicine and ecology. Government-produced radioisotopes supplied physicians with new instruments for analysis and remedy, particularly melanoma treatment, and enabled biologists to track molecular alterations. but the government’s try and current radioisotopes as really good dividends of the atomic age was once undercut within the Fifties through the fallout debates, as scientists and electorate well-known the dangers of low-level radiation. Creager finds that growing to be realization of the chance of radioactivity didn't decrease the call for for radioisotopes at hospitals and laboratories, however it did switch their renowned illustration from a healing agent to an environmental poison. She then demonstrates how, by means of the past due 20th century, public worry of radioactivity overshadowed any appreciation of the confident effects of the AEC’s provision of radioisotopes for study and medicine.

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Extra info for Life Atomic: A History of Radioisotopes in Science and Medicine

Sample text

Lastly, part of chapter 8 is reprinted by permission of the publishers from “Molecular Surveillance: A History of Radioimmunoassays,” inCrafting Immunity: Working Histories of Clinical Immunology, ed. Kenton Kroker, Jennifer Keelan, and Pauline M. H. Mazumdar (Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2008), pp. 201–30. Copyright © 2008. xi) A&M University, the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library, the Archives and Records Office of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the Institute Archives and Special Collections of MIT Libraries, and Special Collections at the J.

Chapter 6 stresses the uneasy relationship between the US government and industry in developing the civilian uses of atomic energy, a problem that the 1954 revision of the Atomic Energy Act was aimed at redressing. The construction of nuclear reactors outside of the AEC's facilities changed the government's role in radioisotope production, as marked by the closing of the original Oak Ridge production reactor in 1963. By that time, users obtained most radioactive materials from companies that prepared radiolabeled compounds and radiopharmaceuticals, based on reactor-generated radioisotopes purchased in bulk from either the AEC or, increasingly, nongovernment suppliers.

Yet the dynamics of this shift are more complex than a neat transition from a civilian to military technology suggested by this chronology. 21)were militarized as part of the Manhattan Engineer District, beginning with the Berkeley cyclotrons. The military uses of radioactive materials in human experimentation, most notoriously the postwar experiments with plutonium ingestion by cancer patients, were largely administered by the former medical physicists and physicians of the Manhattan Project. 50 This legacy of military sponsorship and secret research persisted into the postwar years under the AEC.

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Life Atomic: A History of Radioisotopes in Science and Medicine by Angela N. H. Creager

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