Upgrade to Multicenter 3T Magnetic Resonance Imager

  • Smith, Charles (PI)

Grants and Contracts Details


This proposal is for funding to upgrade a high-end 3T Siemens Trio MR imager at the University of Kentucky. The upgrade includes improvements to the gradients, the radiofrequency transmitter and receiver systems, and data acquisition and reconstruction systems of the imager and will significantly improve the imaging capabilities of the instrument, bringing it up to the state-of-the-art and providing a platform for future upgrades. The upgrade is essential to providing continued support for an outstanding group of eleven NIH funded researchers using this instrument as the central piece of experimental apparatus for their neuroscience research into developmental and degenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. The rapid development of MR technology and neuroscience research necessitates this upgrade and will position UK researchers to advance research into aging, dementia and other neurological diseases. With this upgrade UK neuroscience researchers will have the most sensitive imaging techniques to investigate non-invasively the causes and consequences of neurological diseases. In particular, the specific aims of this upgrade are to improve both the speed and signal-to- noise of image acquisition, the accuracy of image and spectroscopic measurements and to enable the acquisition of novel diffusion weighted data necessary to explore white matter structure and function. The equipment upgrade will benefit many important cutting-edge research projects such as the development of sensitive tools for early detection of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, understanding the areas of the brain involved in alcoholism and autism and understanding the connection between brain structure and behavior and function. The upgrade supports the long term goal of this group, which is the development of methodologies and tools for the study of brain anatomy and function in normal individuals and in subjects affected with neurodegenerative or congenital neurological conditions. The relevance of this equipment upgrade is that it will provide a nationally recognized group of neuroscience investigators with state-of-the-art research tools to greatly expand and enhance their investigations into the changes in the brain and spinal cord which occur with diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's as well as with normal aging and with therapeutic treatments including biomarkers for these conditions. Expanding this research program is crucial as the techniques developed from non-invasive imaging can easily and rapidly be applied to advancing public health through improved screening and diagnosis.
Effective start/end date5/4/095/3/10


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