Center for Integrated Human Brain Science houses various types of high-field NMR/MRI machines to tackle the many-faceted problems of human brain function.
This horizontal system is the first 3T system installed in Japan in April 1996 suitable for human imaging. It is capable of performing a variety of non invasive magnetic functional imaging. These includes functional MR imaging, diffusion tensor analysis as well as Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopic Imaging. A number of intra and extra mural collaborated projects are on going.
The first human vertical system with a 3T large bore vertical magnet, was constructed in January 1999. This vertical bore 3T system is being developed in collaboration with the GE Corporation. Previously, all the functional MR imaging experiments have been performed on supine subjects. But, in our system, the subject sits upright on chair, which is elevated into the magnet by electronic actuators. The subject may drive a car, perform the musical instruments such as the piano or undergo variety of other experiences not possible with current horizontal bore systems.
Awake humans rarely perform focused cognitive functions in the supine position. But, all functional analysis of the human brain has been performed in the horizontal position because the system configuration is defined by clinical convenience. This vertical system provides information regarding gravitational effects on regional perfusion and evaluation of gravitational effects in those patients with brain ischemia, et al.
One of the final goals for clinical imaging research is the development of a non-invasive system capable providing images of microscopic resolution. With 3T systems, we have achieved routine clinical imaging with gross pathological resolution. However, it became apparent that yet higher S/N would be necessary to develop realistic human magnetic resonance microscopy. Subsequently, a system with a 7T magnet was installed in April 2003.
A horizontal 3.0Tesla/100mm diameter bore MR imaging system available for in vivo animal investigations.
The fully in-house assembled instrument is capable of performing in-vivo MR imaging and spectroscopic measurements (1H, 2H, 13C, 19F, 23Na, and 31P) with small size animals. It is equipped with a second RF channel for spectral editing and/or nuclear spin decoupling. The instruments are also integrated with physiological monitoring. A variety of imaging coils and surface coils are fabricated to suit individual projects.
Basically MR measurement is almost non-invasive for living creature. This advantage can enable us to apply the newly developed measurement technique on animal experiment to clinical study within short period. We mainly use this φ16cm horizontal bore animal MR system to develop new measurements technique for brain MR study.
Center for Integrated Human Brain Science