PubSci Explores the Future of Personalized Medicine

members of the PubSci panel enlarge

The PubSci panel compares two scans of a cancer patient: one that was conducted using typical imaging methods and one using medical isotopes. Pictured from left to right are Justin Eure (moderator), Joseph Kim, Cathy Cutler, and Lynn Francesconi.

On the evening of Mar. 27, 2018, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory held its ninth installment of PubSci, the Lab’s science café and conversation series. Brookhaven scientists and their collaborators headed to Napper Tandy’s in Bay Shore, New York to discuss their research on medical isotopes in a casual setting during an event titled, PubSci: Nuclear Medicine for Personalized Cancer Treatment.

Cathy Cutler, Director of the Medical Isotope Research and Production Program at Brookhaven, led the PubSci panel. She was joined by two of her collaborators: Joseph Kim, Associate Professor of Surgery in the Division of Surgical Oncology at Stony Brook Medicine, and Lynn Francesconi, Professor of inorganic chemistry at Hunter College.

Together, the panelists discussed how they work as a team to develop novel medical isotopes—an advanced imaging tool and ultra-precise method of therapy for cancer patients. First by creating these powerful molecules in Brookhaven Lab’s high-energy particle accelerator complex, and then combining chemical and medical tools to deliver the isotopes to patients, the panelists synthesize multiple fields of research to advance the field of personalized medicine. Their ultimate goal is to improve cancer treatments while minimizing the toxic side effects for patients.

“Over the past 15 years we’ve seen a huge improvement in the quality of life for cancer patients,” said Cathy Cutler. “I think that’s going to continue, and I predict cancer will no longer be the death sentence that we often feel like it is today.”

PubSci audience enlarge

Nearly 100 community members attended PubSci and the audience offered up many questions, driving a lively discussion throughout the night.

Nearly 100 community members attended this PubSci event and the audience offered up many questions, driving a lively discussion throughout the night.

Since 2014, PubSci has offered the Long Island community a chance to see a casual side of the cutting-edge research happening every day at Brookhaven Lab, and chat with the Lab’s expert scientists over a drink. The series hops around Long Island covering different topics from the Big Bang to tomorrow’s technologies. Stay tuned for an announcement on the next PubSci!

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit

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2018-12826  |  INT/EXT  |  Newsroom