Field Trip


5 July

8:00 to 20:30 (back in Lausanne)

CERN, Geneva

How radioisotopes travel from CERN to hospital patients

Meeting point: Parking Lausanne Bellerive at 08:00 (bus leaves at 08:15)

Transport: by bus

Number of participants: 20

Registration fee: CHF 17 (includes transport and lunch)

Details: Participants need to bring a valid ID. CERN's sites are located on either side of the French-Swiss border and the participants might cross the border during the trip. Depending on nationality, the participant may also require a Schengen visa. Visitors below 16 years old, pregnant women and people with ferromagnetic implants (pacemaker, insulin pump, etc.) cannot be admitted.  No high-heeled shoes, open-toed shoes, flip-flops and sandals allowed.

Organizers and sponsors: Geneva University Hospital (HUG), University of Geneva (UNIGE), and CERN

Contact: Cristina Garcia (cristina.garcfdez@gmail.com)


Famous for particle physics, CERN has also been venturing into medical research. In particular, CERN MEDICIS is a facility dedicated to R&D in life sciences and medical applications. Geneva University Hospital (HUG), the largest university hospital in Switzerland, and the University of Geneva collaborate with CERN to study and test medical radioisotopes.

Participants on this trip will discover how isotopes that experience radioactive decay, known as radioisotopes, are produced, studied and used for a new generation of precision therapeutics based on radioisotope imaging. Following radioactive isotopes from their creation to their use in medical treatment, the participants will find out how CERN and HUG work together to find new treatments for cancer and other major diseases.

The first stop on this trip is the Isotope mass Separator On-Line facility (ISOLDE) at CERN where medical isotopes are produced, collected and studied for medical applications. ISOLDE has been operating for 50 years and has produced 1300 isotopes, some of which can be produced nowhere else. CERN is now able to send radioisotopes to the HUG for medical research.

Once at the HUG, participants will be brought up to speed with different stages of the translational pipeline, and they will discuss the newest results of imaging-guided drug development. They will tour the cyclotron, radiochemistry and radiobiology laboratories and discover animal and patient scanners.

To wrap up the day, the participants on the different Geneva field trips will be treated to a closing cocktail party at Campus Biotech.