SHINE Medical Technologies LLC today announced the appointment of Harrie Buurlage as vice president, European operations. Mr. Buurlage will oversee all of SHINE’s activities in Europe, including the company’s siting, construction and operation of a medical isotope production facility there.
Mr. Buurlage brings more than 25 years of experience in the nuclear medicine industry to his new role at SHINE, including positions in management, operations, and sales and marketing.
Mr. Buurlage was chief operating officer and then managing director of NRG, an international nuclear service provider, in the Netherlands. Among other things, Mr. Buurlage oversaw the operation of all of NRG’s nuclear installations, including the Dutch High Flux medical isotope production facility in Petten, which produces isotopes used in more than 30,000 patient treatments a day. He led a multi-year transition of the company from a science institute to a more robust health care organization.
Before joining NRG, Mr. Buurlage was global director of manufacturing for Covidien USA, now Curium Pharma, where he was responsible for radiopharmaceutical isotope manufacturing and distribution at facilities in the Netherlands, United Kingdom and United States. Mr. Buurlage oversaw the addition of a new reactor to Covidien’s supply chain in only nine months. He also drove logistical improvements in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and was global chairman of the company’s nuclear medicine council.
Earlier in this career, Mr. Buurlage spent nearly 15 years at Mallinckrodt, where he served in positions of increasing responsibility at Petten, including managing director of Mallinckrodt Medical (MM) B.V. and director of EMEA operations.
“It is well known that current European producers of medical isotopes are planning to cease operations in the next several years, and SHINE is excited to be in a position to ensure that Europeans have uninterrupted access to the life-saving products our team and technology can provide,” said Greg Piefer, founder and CEO of SHINE. “Harrie’s experience in the nuclear industry and European market, and his management, operations and logistics expertise will be invaluable to SHINE as we execute our plan there. We look forward to working with Harrie to make a SHINE European presence a reality, and provide for a robust European and global supply chain.”
Mr. Buurlage studied applied physics at the University of Groningen. He earned certification as a radiation safety officer at the University of Leiden, the highest-level certification of its kind in Europe, which allows holders to supervise large, complex nuclear sites.
“The company’s accelerator technology, talented team and vision for Europe, the United States and the rest of the world are incredibly compelling,” Mr. Buurlage said. “I know the European market well and am confident that SHINE will play a significant role here and in the global market, particularly because of its safer, cleaner and more cost-effective production process.”
About Medical Isotopes
Medical isotopes are radioisotopes that are used in the diagnosis and treatment of disease. Molybdenum-99 (Mo-99) is a radioisotope that decays into the diagnostic imaging agent technetium 99m (Tc-99m). The workhorse of nuclear medicine, Tc-99m is used in more than 40 million medical imaging procedures each year, primarily in stress tests to diagnose heart disease and to stage cases of cancer. SHINE was founded to deploy a safe, cost-effective and environmentally friendly technology to produce a variety of medical isotopes, including Mo‑99. Roughly one percent of all Mo-99 in the world decays every hour, meaning it must be produced continuously. Current production is limited to only a handful of government-owned nuclear research reactors, the majority of which are overseas.
About SHINE Medical Technologies LLC
Founded in 2010, SHINE is a development-stage company working to become a manufacturer of radioisotopes for nuclear medicine. The SHINE system uses a patented, proprietary manufacturing process that offers major advantages over existing and proposed production technologies. It does not require a nuclear reactor, uses less electricity, generates less waste and is compatible with the nation’s existing supply chain for Mo-99. In 2014, SHINE announced the execution of Mo-99 supply agreements with GE Healthcare and Lantheus Medical Imaging. In 2015, with the help of Argonne National Laboratory, GE Healthcare demonstrated that SHINE Mo-99 can act as a drop-in replacement for reactor-based Mo-99. In 2016, SHINE received regulatory approval from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to construct its production facility. The company began construction of the facility in the spring of 2019. Learn more at https://shinemed.com.