In February of 1974 Mike Welch, Al Wolf and David Silvester attended an informal meeting at the Sloan Kettering Institute in New York on the role of cyclotron in medical centers. After the meeting, the three of them went to a nearby coffee shop where they discussed the possibility of initiating small international meeting of individuals actually engaged in work with medical cyclotrons and radiopharmaceuticals. A founding committee was formed.
The first symposium was held in 1976 at Brookhaven National Laboratory. During the meeting 113 abstracts were presented.
This started a series of biennial meetings known as the Symposium on Radiopharmaceutical Chemistry (SRPC) and then International Symposium on Radiopharmaceutical Chemistry (ISRC). The abstracts have been published in the Journal of Labelled Compounds and Radiopharmaceuticals (JLCR).
The Society of Radiopharmaceutical Sciences was founded in 2000 and the meetings became the International Symposium on Radiopharmaceutical Sciences (ISRS).
Nuclear Medicine and Biology was the designated journal.
In 2004 official by-laws were accepted and the Society of Radiopharmaceutical Sciences (SRS) was founded.
Biannual meetings continued, and attendance grew. In 2019, the 23rd meeting of the SRS was held in Beijing China where 639 scientists attended and 530 Abstracts were presented.
For 44 years, International Symposia and ultimately the Society of Radiopharmaceutical Sciences (SRS) has pursued a mission to advance excellence in radiopharmaceutical science education and research.
In 2020, a new partnership was formed between SRS and The Dr. Michael J Welch Foundation, The SRS Hot Atom Fund. A whisper campaign is ongoing. The fund will officially launch in May 2022 at the 24th SRS meeting in Nantes, France.