EXPLORER, the world's first medical image scanner capable of capturing a 3D image of the entire human body at one…
EXPLORER, the world’s first medical image scanner capable of capturing a 3D image of the entire human body at one time, has produced its first scans.
UC Davis researchers Simon Cherry and Ramsey Badawi, EXPLORER are a combined positron emission tomography or PET and X-ray tomography or CT scanner that can form the entire body at the same time. Because the machine captures radiation much more efficiently than other scanners, EXPLORER can produce an image in as little as 1 second, producing over time movies that can track specially labeled drugs as they move around the entire body.
A short video of the scan can be seen at https://bit.ly/2FvQP8n.
The developers expect the technology to have countless applications from improving diagnostics for tracking disease progression to investigate new drug treatments.
The first images from scans of people using the new device will appear on the upcoming radiological community in North America’s meeting, which begins Saturday, November 24, in Chicago. The scanner has been developed in collaboration with Shanghai-based United Imaging Healthcare, which built the system based on its latest technology platform and eventually manufactures the units in the broader healthcare market.
“While I had imagined what the pictures would look like For years, I did not prepare for the incredible detail we could see on the first scan,” said Cherry, professor of the UCD Department of Biomedical Engineering. “Although Still, there is a very thorough analysis to do, I think we already know that EXPLORER delivers about what we promised. “
Badawi, Nuclear Medicine Director at UCD Health and Vice President of Research at the Department of Radiology, said he was dumbfounded when he saw the first pictures.
“Detail level was surprising, especially when we got the reconstruction a bit more optimized,” he said. “We could see features that you just do not look at common PET scans. And the dynamic sequence that shows the radio racer moved around the body in three dimensions over time was sincere, mindset. There is no other device that can get data like this in humans so this is really new. “
Badawi and Cherry understood a comprehensive scanner 1
3 years ago. Their idea was kickstarted in 2011 with a $ 1.5 million contribution from the National Cancer Institute, enabling them to set up a wide consortium of researchers and others co-workers. And it received a huge boost in 2015 with a grant of $ 15.5 million from the National Institutes of Health. The funding enabled them to collaborate with a commercial partner and get the first EXPLORER scanner built.
Cherry said he expects EXPLORER to have a profound impact on clinical research and patient care as it provides diagnostic PET scans of a higher quality than ever been possible. EXPLORER also scans up to 40 times faster than current PET scans and can produce a diagnostic scan of the entire body in as little as 20 to 30 seconds.
Alternatively, EXPLORER can scan with a size ldos up to 40 times less than the current PET scanning, opening up new areas of research and makes it possible to implement many repeated trials of an individual or dramatically reduce the dose in pediatric studies, where control of the cumulative radiation dose is especially important.
“The difference between image quality, acquisition time and injected radiation dose will vary for different applications, but in any case, we can scan better, faster or less radiation or any combination of these,” says Cherry.
For the first time, a scanner will be able to evaluate what happens in all body organs and tissues simultaneously. For example, it can quantitatively measure blood flow or how the body absorbs glucose throughout the body. Researchers intend to use the scanner to study cancer that has spread beyond a single tumor site, inflammation, infection, immunological or metabolic disorders and many other diseases.
“I do not think it will be long before we look at a number of EXPLORER systems around the world,” said Cherry. “But it’s due to demonstrating the benefits of the system, both clinically and for research.”
UC Davis works closely with United Imaging Healthcare to get the first system delivered and installed at the EXPLORER Imaging Center in hired space in Sacramento, and researchers hope to begin research projects and image processing of patients using EXPLORER already in June 2019.  – UC Davis Health News