CTSC:MGHresources:The Mouse Imaging Program

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The Mouse Imaging Program (MIP) is a large scale imaging resource supported in part through an NCI U24 grant. The resource provides the larger Harvard/MIT research community with access to state-of-the-art in vivo imaging technologies. The program offers high resolution magnetic resonance (MR), positron emission tomography (PET-CT), single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT-CT), computed tomography (CT), fluorescence mediated tomography (FMT), bioluminescence (BLI), and various other fluorescence imaging technologies. The integrated program also provides mouse holding facilities for serial imaging, surgery, anesthesia, veterinary care and imaging agents. Image reconstruction, 3D display, fusion, quantitative image analysis and server access are also available. The program offers periodic training and performs its own research to continuously improve existing imaging technologies. Imaging requests from investigators of the Mouse Model of Human Cancers Consortia and recipients of NCI grants are prioritized.

  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

4.7T and 7T Bruker Pharmascan

The overall goal of the MRI facility is provide high resolution/high throughput imaging capabilities and equipment/pulse sequences that deliver sufficient SNR to test novel molecularly targeted MR imaging agents. Two high field magnets operate at 4.7 Tesla and 7 Tesla fieldstrength, providing the optimal setup to image both T1 and T2/T2* targeting imaging probes. In addition, the magnets facilitate state of the art high resolution anatomical and functional imaging of various mouse models in cancer, cardiovascular and neuro-research. We use tailored MR pulse sequences and high-end, dedicated RF coils, ranging in size from rat whole body to mouse heart, to optimize SNR for specific application. To assure imaging at physiologic conditions and to optimize anesthesia, dedicated monitoring systems are capable of recording the heart and respiratory rate and body temperature, which is kept in a physiological range by MR compatible heating systems.

  • PET-CT imaging facility

Siemens Inveon PET-CT

New Siemens Inveon PET-CT (formerly Concord Focus) system uses high light output LSO (Lutetium Oxyorthosilicate) crystals, and has a timing resolution of less than 1.5 nsec, greater than 10% peak absolute sensitivity, a stationary FOV of 12.7 cm (which can increase to 30 cm FOV with continuous bed motion), an energy resolution of less than 18%, over 25,000 individual detector elements, and a spatial resolution of less than 1.4 mm. The CT uses CCD technology that allows the highest available signal-to-noise ratio, and fiber optics that permit the highest efficiency light collection. It has 4,064 x 4,064 detectors, a FOV greater than 10 x 10 cm, a spatial resolution of 15 micron isotropic voxels, and can scan an entire mouse in less than 1 min.

GammaMedica X-PET

The imaging system used is Gamma Medica FLEX XPET / XO small animal imaging system. The XPET system has the highest sensitivity and largest axial field of view among small animal PET scanners. The 3D PET system is comprised of 11520 (2.3 mm x 2.38 mm x 10 mm) Bismuth Germanate (BGO) crystals in 48 separate rings. The large axial field of view (11.6 cm) can image an entire mouse with a resolution less than 2 mm.