Nav: Home

World's first total-body PET scanner takes a big step forward

January 17, 2017

The UC Davis-based EXPLORER consortium, which aims to build a revolutionary total-body PET (positron emission tomography) scanner, has announced the selection of two industry partners to help build the prototype device. They are United Imaging Healthcare America, a North American subsidiary of Shanghai United Imaging Healthcare, and SensL Technologies of Cork, Ireland.

Positron emission tomography, or PET, scanning uses short-lived radioactive tracers to show how organs and tissues are functioning in the body, while magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) scans mostly show anatomy. PET scans are widely used to diagnose and track a variety of illnesses, including cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer's disease.

The EXPLORER scanner will have over 560,000 detector elements and can view all organs of the body simultaneously, with a 40-fold increase in effective signal over current technology. That would both improve image quality and reduce radiation exposure to patients over conventional PET scanners, which can only image a small segment of the body at a time.

Impact on diagnostics and treatment

Total-body PET has the potential to impact clinical diagnostics, enable new fields of research and facilitate development of cures for a wide range of human diseases.

"A system with this detection sensitivity will dramatically improve our ability to study cancer and other diseases as well as advance diagnostic capabilities in our industry," said lead researcher Simon Cherry, professor in the UC Davis Department of Biomedical Engineering.

The EXPLORER consortium selected United Imaging Healthcare (UIH) America to build the first prototype total-body PET scanner after an extensive review of potential commercial partners.

"We are very proud to be selected to be part of the EXPLORER consortium and provide the system design support required to deliver a system capable of outstanding performance," said Hongdi Li, CEO of UIH America.

The detector technology in the scanner will incorporate the latest generation solid-state silicon photomultiplier light sensors, instead of the vacuum-based photomultiplier tubes used in conventional PET scanners.

"The use of silicon photomultiplier technology is rapidly replacing older photomultiplier tube technologies and provides improved resolution for a system of this scale," said Bryan Campbell, CEO of SensL, which will supply the detectors.

"We believe we have gathered leaders in the medical imaging field to quickly and cost effectively bring this technology to reality in an exciting and innovative way," said Ramsey Badawi, professor of radiology at UC Davis and co-leader of the project.

Delivery of the prototype scanner is expected in 2018.

More about EXPLORER

The EXPLORER consortium was formed in 2011 with the goal of building the first total-body PET scanner and also includes research groups at the University of Pennsylvania and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Following initial feasibility studies, in September 2015 the consortium received a major grant from the National Institutes of Health to build the first prototype device. See EXPLORER.ucdavis.edu for more information.
-end-


University of California - Davis

Related Positron Emission Tomography Articles:

SUTD physicists unlock the mystery of thermionic emission in graphene
SUTD researchers discover a new theory that paves the way for the design of better graphene electronics and energy converters.
Curbing diesel emission could reduce big city mortality
US cities could see a decline in mortality rates and an improved economy through midcentury if federal and local governments maintain stringent air pollution policies and diminish concentrations of diesel freight truck exhaust, according to Cornell University research.
Faster than ever -- neutron tomography detects water uptake by roots
The high-speed neutron tomography developed at HZB generates a complete 3D image every 1.5 seconds and is thus seven times faster than before.
The secret of fireworm is out: molecular basis of its light emission
A collaborative effort by an international team of scientists led to to the discovery of new luciferin from fireworm.
Staging β-amyloid pathology with amyloid positron emission tomography
This multicenter study used in vivo β-amyloid cerebrospinal fluid, a biomarker of Alzheimer disease, and positron emission tomography findings to track progression of Alzheimer disease over six years among study participants.
More Positron Emission Tomography News and Positron Emission Tomography Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Erasing The Stigma
Many of us either cope with mental illness or know someone who does. But we still have a hard time talking about it. This hour, TED speakers explore ways to push past — and even erase — the stigma. Guests include musician and comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, neuroscientist and psychiatrist Thomas Insel, psychiatrist Dixon Chibanda, anxiety and depression researcher Olivia Remes, and entrepreneur Sangu Delle.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype
Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health related science news and academic press releases: retrospective observational study Claims of causality in health news: a randomised trial This...