Small Animal imaging Core (SAIC) The purpose of the Small Animal Imaging Core is to assist HCCC investigators by providing a comprehensive service for non-invasive anatomical and physiological imaging of mice and rats. The ultimate product of the core consists of quantitative image datasets taken longitudinally in scientific studies related to cancer biology, drug development, and assessment of therapeutic intervention. The basic services of the core are 1) Consultative service for imaging modality choice and imaging protocol development, 2) Assistance with ACURF and other regulatory submissions, 3) Animal preparation and monitoring, 4) Single or multiple modality imaging, and 5) Image reconstruction, data analysis, and results interpretation. The small animal specific instrumentation owned and operated directly by the core consists of several imaging modalities including PET, SPECT, gamma camera imaging, autoradiography, and CT. Additionally small animal MRI, ultrasound and optical imaging are available in nearby laboratories. The Core operates a small image processing laboratory including 4 high-end workstations with a suite of multi-modality software available for use, including PMOD, and Inveon Research Workspace, both fully equipped with 3D and pharmacokinetic packages. The core also has its own 12 TB RAID5 networked archive system, mirrored to offsite research networked storage. Consolidation of all high end small animal imaging equipment into a single space under the Small Animal Imaging Core will take place with the completion of the Pappajohn Biomedical Discovery Building (presently under construction - occupancy expected in 2014) where ten dedicated small animal imaging suites, and eight imaging support laboratories will house all SAIC imaging technologies. This strategy is designed to provide efficient, professional, convenient and cost-effective access to imaging equipment and expertise using small animal imaging.
The ability to image cancer non-invasively in small animals is enhancing our ability to periderm basic and applied cancer research. The small animal imaging core supports research geared towards understanding both the behavior of malignancy and the efficacy of new approaches to cancer therapy.
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