The overarching goal of this project is to develop and evaluate implantable and bioresorbable radio frequency (RF) coils for high-resolution and high-specicity post-surgical monitoring with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The immediate target application of this work is the evaluation of peripheral nerve regeneration following surgical repair. Surgical repair of nerve is common following traumatic injury, but outcomes are highly variable. MRI oers potential to monitor response of the nerve to surgical repair; however, it can be a challenge to acquire MRI with sucient spatial resolution and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for robust characterization of nerve regeneration. The use of a small, local RF coil for MRI signal reception is known to substantially increase SNR and enable higher image resolution over a targeted volume of tissue. Such coils have been demonstrated eective in animal studies and here we propose to harness recent advances in bioresorbable electronics technology to create biore- sorbable RF coils that are suitable for clinical applications. Specically, we will develop and evaluate coils for the purpose of quantitatively evaluating nerve regeneration following surgical repair.
In aim 1, we will design and fabricate a wide range of dierent bioresorbable RF coils, suitable imaging nerves of dierent sizes and locations.
In aim 2, we will experimentally test these coils in normal rats, rats that have undergone an experimental nerve injury, and in human cadaver arms.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a powerful diagnostic tool, but its eectiveness can be limited by intrinsic sensitivity. For evaluation of a small volume of tissue, MRI sensitivity can be enhanced by implanting a local receiver coil on or around the tissue of interest. This project aims to develop such coils that be implanted in hu- mans during a surgical procedure, such as nerve injury repair, used for some period of post-surgical monitoring, and then harmlessly absorbed by the body.