SA Instrument R&D Supported by Brookhaven microMRI Facility

SA Instruments, Inc. designs, manufactures and sells physiological monitoring and gating systems for use with small animals. SAII works closely with research scientists in major universities and bioresearch facilities worldwide to solve exacting problems associated with small animal research.

Improved gradient suppression for SAIIís Model 1025 MR-compatible Monitoring and Gating System. The electrocardiogram of small animals in high field MR imaging systems suffers from artifacts which result primarily from vibrations of the ECG leads. SA Instruments has an ongoing program to develop instrumentation to acquire, store and analyze these artifacts. The ultimate goal is to improve electrocardiogram monitoring and gating during MR data acquisition. These improvements are necessary to allow state of the art imaging sequences to retrospectively gate MR data acquisitions.

Development of a QC tool for MR gradients. SA Instruments is developing a MR-compatible fiber optic, dual channel oscilloscope to capture and store data within the bore of the MR magnet. The hostile environment of the MR precludes normal instrumentation from being able to function and acquire the necessary information. SAIIís MR-compatible fiber optic scope will be a valuable tool to measure gradient fidelity and electromagnetic emissions within the magnet bore.

Development of a peripheral pulse sensor to monitor blood flow in an animalís extremity. The sensor detects variations in light transmitted across the vessels in an animalís extremity which result from pulsing blood flow. Peripheral pulse detection during MR examination is useful to monitor heart rate. It can provide a simple and efficient method to monitor the animals physiological status and in many cases it would provide an adequate cardiac gate for the imager.

Adaptation of an existing micro invasive blood pressure transducer for use in MR. The micro transducer which is 0.4 mm in diameter would be inserted in the vessels of small animals without compromising normal blood flow. Invasive blood pressure measurements in MR can currently be performed for rats and larger animals with SAIIís Model 1025. However the present technology does not work reliably with mice. The micro transducer which can be inserted into very small vessels would extend SAIIís IBP measurements to mice undergoing MR examination.

Development of oxygen saturation monitoring in mice and larger animals during MR examination. Monitoring of the oxygen saturation of hemoglobin is important in many research experiments. Currently, when required, blood gas analysis is performed periodically in rats and larger animals during an M\R imaging session. However, in the case of mice, it is difficult to draw a sufficient amount of blood for analysis as the total blood volume is limited. Real time monitoring of oxygen saturation in mice involves development of fiber optic sensors and electronics to analyze the differential absorption of red and infrared light. SAIIís Model 1025 system currently supports acquisition and display of oximetry measurements and waveforms. An oximetry module and sensor for rats and mice are under development.

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Last Modified: October 31, 2008
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