Professori Kalevi Kairemo

Kalevi Kairemo

Breast cancer Prostate cancer
Nuclear medicine

Chief Physician, Molecular Radiotherapy & Nuclear Medicine
Specialist in Clinical Chemistry and Nuclear Medicine
M.D., Ph.D., Professor

Language proficiency: 

Finnish, Swedish, English, Norwegian, German

Areas of special expertise: 

Molecular Radiotherapy, PET, Theragnostics, Radiopharmacology, Radiation Biology; Prostate Cancer, Thyroid Cancer, Neuroendicrine Tumours


Nuclear Medicine, Radioisotope Therapy

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Clinical Research Professor in Nuclear Medicine, MDACC, USA 2015
Professor in Nuclear Medicine, UAS, Sweden 2001
Professor in Clinical Chemistry, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim 1999
Specialist in Clinical Chemistry, University of Helsinki 1994
Adjunct Professor in Clinical Chemistry and Experimental Nuclear Medicine, University of Helsinki 1994
Doctor of Medical Science, University of Helsinki 1993
Master of Science, Chemical Engineering, Helsinki University of Technology, Department of Chemical Engineering 1980

Work experience 

  • Docrates Cancer Center, Chief Physician, Molecular Radiotherapy & Nuclear Medicine 2010-
  • Advanced Accelerator Applications SA, St Genis Pouilly, France, Clinical Research Director 2009
  • HUH Department of Oncology, Consulting Specialist 2004-2009
  • Akademiska sjukhuset, Chief Physician/Professor in Nuclear Medicine 2001-2006
  • NTNU, Norway, Chief Physician/Professor in Clinical Chemistry 1998-1999

Scientific activities 

Lifetime Achievement Award for Contributions to Nuclear Medicine given by World Association Radiopharmaceutical and Molecular Therapy 2011, EU-project coordinations, Editorial Board Memberships and Scientific Congress Presidencies (see publications), numerous (>100) invited lectures in 40 different countries


Memberships and positions of trust 

Member of the Editorial Board: Journal of Diagnostic Imaging in Therapy 2015; World Journal of Nuclear Medicine 2014; Asia Oceania Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Biology 2013; Current Pharmaceutical Design 2008; Current Radiopharmaceuticals 2007
Member of the Administrative Board: World Association of Radiopharmaceutical and Molecular Therapy 2009-2012


Kalevi Kairemo is a unique scientist; a creative researcher, developer and a pioneer in his field. He is driven by the desire to understand phenomena at a fundamental level, seeing the complete picture. From early on, his botanical interests made systematic thinking (Linnaean taxonomy) a part of his mind-set. As a result, Kairemo masters the entire process of his field – radiochemistry, radiation physics and imaging methods, labelling techniques, interpretation of images and treatment planning. Clinical oncology is his scientific starting point, and he takes particular interest in how isotope methods can be used for the targeted treatment of more rare cancers, such as cancer of the thyroid and other hormone-dependant cancers.

Kalevi Kairemo ended up in the medical field through studies in bioelectrochemistry: after graduating from the Helsinki University of Technology as Master of Science in Chemical Engineering, he started his medical studies at the University of Helsinki. He became a doctor in 1986. In 1993, he successfully defended his dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Medical Science (nuclear medicine and oncology, University of Helsinki), was awarded his first docenture at the University of Helsinki in 1994 and his first professor competence at the University of Umeå, Sweden, in 1996. In 1999, he was appointed for the first time as a professor at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.

In addition to nuclear medicine, Kalevi Kairemo is a licensed specialist in clinical chemistry and health care administration, and the Finnish Medical Association has certified him as a Specialist in Pharmaceutical Medicine. He has worked in 11 countries and 3 continents, and in addition to Finland, he is a certified physician and specialist in his fields in Sweden, Norway and Estonia. Kairemo has been involved with clinical nuclear medicine for over 20 years, 15 of which in university hospitals.

With regard to clinical work, an important place of learning in addition to the Helsinki University Central Hospital, where Kairemo has worked for the longest period of his career, is the Uppsala University Hospital where he lead the foundation of a new Department of Nuclear Medicine. But as far as science and learning goes, nothing compares to the time he spent in Memorial SloanKettering Cancer Center in New York from 1989 to 1993, at a time when it already attracted the best talent in oncologic nuclear medicine.

Kairemo has also been involved in business: at first, he participated in the founding of the CTT Cancer Targeting Technologies company specialising in carrier nanoparticles, which won the Venture Cup Competition in 2001. After that, Novasome, the first biotechnology company in Poland, was founded. It focused on research and development. The third company Kairemo founded, Imanext Oy, a contract research organization in biomedicine, expanded into 38 countries during his stay. His merits also include involvement in an organisation providing support services for the field of medicine and biotechnology (CRO), and being a Clinical Director at the French-Italian company Advanced Accelerator Applications S.A, which is a spin-off company of CERN.

He has been working at Docrates Cancer Center since spring 2010. Kairemo feels that Docrates is a unique hospital, even on a global scale: close cooperation with a radiopharmaceutical manufacturer is possible because of its close proximity, the hospital has the opportunity to gain international merit, and the newest technology is within grasp.

Kairemo is also an active researcher and writer. He has published over 150 scientific original publications, over 200 meeting abstracts and several popular articles. Kairemo also has two global patents regarding targeted diagnostics and the treatment of cancer. In addition, he has cocoordinated several European research projects, mentored ten doctoral dissertations, lectured in over 40 countries and organised an international world conference on nuclear medicine, which was held in Levi, Northern Finland, in 2012. Of the several awards he has received, Kairemo places particular value on the Lifetime Achievement Award, awarded to him in 2012 by the World Association of Radiopharmaceutical and Molecular Therapy for lifelong work in nuclear medicine.

Alongside with his intense research, development and treatment work, Kairemo is engaged in extreme sports: long distance running and skiing, marathons (in all continents) and alpine skiing. He also enjoys visual arts and drawing, for example he draws the pictures for his scientific publications himself.

Kairemo indeed has an wealth of experience, skills and merits. “Dum spiro spero – While I breath, I hope” is his motto, he says. “And I am aware that pride is the reverse side of despair. We need to bring hope to where there is despair.”

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Curriculum Vitae (pdf, 52 KB, 19.5.2017)