Awake Animal Imaging

The Biomedical Engineering program which is part of the Center for Translational Neuroimaging focused on the development of new imaging instruments. It is driven by an interdisciplinary team of Scientists in several Brookhaven Departments and Divisions (Chemistry, Medical, Physics, Instrumentation) in collaboration with scientists from Stony Brook University and Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory.

Part of the Awake Animal Imaging team (L to R): Sudeepti Southekal, Paul Vaska, Sepideh Shokouhi and Craig Woody.

The first major project is the development of a PET instrument to image the brain of an awake rat. This will be a major advance in preclinical imaging of the brain in that it will allow imaging without anesthesia which is currently required to prevent movement and which produces profound effects on brain function. With this instrument (called the ratCAP, rat Conscious Animal PET), the animal “wears” the tomograph directly attached to the skull, to eliminate the relative motion between the tomograph and the head. This full-ring tomograph (with LSO detectors, Avalanche Photodiodes (APD) and miniature Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC)) fits on the rat’s head and is counter-weighted to facilitate movement of the animal. The prototype will be finished in 2005. Other BME projects underway include the development of a new volumetric PET detector and a wrist detector for input function determination, motion tracking for awake animals and subsequent image correction in both PET and MR, research on MR acoustics and novel optical imaging probes.


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Last Modified: October 18, 2012
Please forward all questions about this site to: Kathy Folkers