We are one of few research groups in the world with a high field system (4.7 T) dedicated to human and animal metabolic research. Our track record of scientific advances make us a preeminent group studying muscle energetics, physiology, and metabolism with the goal of developing diagnostic methods for human diseases. Our Translational Center for Metabolic Imaging (TCMI) was established in 2009 by an ARRA "Grand Opportunity" grant to develop and disseminate these cutting-edge MR spectroscopic tools to University research sites across the US. We now serve 5 NIH funded projects (and 2 foundation grants) at the University of Washington and 4 NIH funded projects at collaborating sites. In 2010, we established a collaboration with the Integrated Brain Imaging Center (IBIC) at the University of Washington to apply our technical skills and new insights developed from skeletal muscle to understanding degenerative disease and aging in the brain. A major limitation to our program is our obsolete MR system control console, which needs frequent repair, lacks vendor support, and is hindering progress on NIH funded grants. It also cannot meet the challenge of new advances in our research. We propose to replace this 90's vintage console with new computer, software and digital electronics as well as rf electronics. This replacement would make possible a wide range of new experimental approaches for NIH funded grants in our laboratory and for collaborating investigators. The new console will permit rapid shimming, improved signal to noise, high-resolution MR methods for in vivo applications, and state-of-the-art imaging. The MAPSHIM software in the new console will allow us to rapidly and reproducibly shim human limbs that are typically off center. We expect to reduce our study time by a third. The new console allows coordinated control of the shims and gradients that will permit implementation of state- of-the-art imaging programs. This new imaging software and receiver hardware will permit rapid scout imagine for checks on surface coil placement and state-of-the-art parallel acquisition imaging programs (e.g. GRAPPA) for high-resolution images on small tissue volumes. The new digital and rf electronics will permit greatly increase signal to noise. This upgrade will directly affect 9 NIH funded grants as well as 2 foundation grants serving a total of 10 Institutions. Public Health Relevance: The proposed MR system control console upgrade will have several benefits: 1) eliminate hindrances in human health research presented by obsolete equipment, 2) permit development of new diagnostic tools made possible by state-of-the-art equipment, and 3) facilitate translation of MR tools to commercial 3T systems for use in clinical research at sites across the US.
The proposed MR system control console upgrade will have several benefits: 1) eliminate hindrances in human health research presented by obsolete equipment, 2) permit development of new diagnostic tools made possible by state-of-the-art equipment, and 3) facilitate translation of MR tools to commercial 3T systems for use in clinical research at sites across the US.