Better Brain Imaging
- MRI & PET scans will be linked together in a new prototype brain-
imaging machine that will perform magnetic resonance imaging and
positron emission tomography at the same time. The new device will
allow quick and more accurate correlation between activity in various
areas of the brain and the cellualr level. MRI gives info about brain
structure and bloof flow to brain regions. PET allows the monitoring of
metabolic activity at the neuronal/cellular level. The PET/MRI imager
by Siemens corporation will provide better studies of Alzheimer's
disease, amyloid plques and drug effectiveness. antidepressants will
also be studied to see how they impact the brain's activities over time
in various regions. Receptors can be monitored while simultaneously
monitoring bloodflow. Studies of bipolar disorder are also planned.
Several prototypes are being sent out. The first commerical devices
will be availbale in 18 months.