In the armamentarium of techniques available for contemporary biomedical research carried out with humans at the basic, translational, and clinical level, magnetic resonance (MR) methods have become critical and indispensible, often providing non-invasive measurement capabilities that are simply unavailable from alternative approaches. The central aim of this Biotechnology Research Center (BTRC) grant is to significantly advance such MR based measurement capabilities and their biomedical applications in humans by: 1) developing novel image acquisition and reconstruction technologies and engineering solutions through five TRD (Technology Research and Development) projects, and 2) enabling a large number of Collaborative and Service projects to acquire advanced structural, functional, and physiological information to investigate human organ function in health and disease, targeting both human brain and the abdominal organs. This central aim will be pursued with a focus on high (3 and 4 Tesla) and particularly ultrahigh (7 Tesla and higher) magnetic fields, which provide numerous advantages but also pose several significant technological challenges that must be overcome. This is a unique feature and a particular strength of this BTRC;ultrahigh field MR and numerous accompanying methods for human studies were pioneered in this BTRC, yielding previously unavailable detection sensitivity and precision. This BTRC is also home to some of the most advanced, unique and rare high field MR instrumentation in the world. Collectively, these unique instruments and the proposed methodological developments are expected to be transformative for MR technology and its applications.

Public Health Relevance

Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging is a non-invasive is method that can be used for clinical, preclinical, translational and basic research studies with humans. This grant aims to significantly advance the capabilities of the MR technique through new technological developments and engineering solutions, targeting studies of function and circuitry of the human brain, and physiology of the heart, kidney, and prostate of the human abdomen.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)
Biotechnology Resource Grants (P41)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZEB1-OSR-E (J2))
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Liu, Christina
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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
Schools of Medicine
United States
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