The Preclinical Imaging Research Laboratory (PIRL) currently owns and operates a first-generation Bruker BioSpec 7T/20 (7 tesla/20 cm bore) unshielded Magnetic Resonance Imager/Spectrometer. We are requesting $1,887,500 to purchase a Bruker 7T/30 USR small animal 7T MRI scanner to physically and operationally replace the current scanner, which was purchased in 1994. At 23 years old it is apparent that this magnet is nearing the end of its usefulness, and its age alone jeopardizes our users and their over $7,900,000 in funded projects. These projects cover cancer research, neuroscience, infectious disease, tissue rejection, and nanoparticle/contrast agent development. The 7T/30 offers a number of important advantages. Chief among these are machine stability and reparability, which are not possible with due to magnet age. In addition, a larger bore diameter, 30 cm vs. 20 cm; will allow for larger animals and samples, such as large rats, pigs and small primates and primate brains, to be imaged at 7T. This will increase or user base and provide imaging services not currently available on campus at this time. The new MRI, its gradients and gradient amplifiers and the requested coils will enhance our DTI (Diffusion Tensor Imaging), ASL (Arterial Spin labeling) and fMRI (functional MRI) capabilities and the new 7T MRI will provide for better translation of protocols between this preclinical small animal MRI scanner and our TIM Trio 3T human MRI scanner. Added benefits include an approximate savings of over $40,000.00 per year in helium and liquid nitrogen costs. In addition, the active shielding will make the laboratory safer for users and trainees, and the full maintenance coverage for all components will ensure that imaging continues with minimal interruptions.
This grant will fund the purchase of a new Bruker 7T/30 USR small animal 7T MRI scanner. This scanner will replace our current Bruker Biospec 70/20 7T scanner, which was purchased in 1994 and is nearing the end of its usefulness. This new scanner will significantly improve current and future research into contrast agent development, an array of different types of cancer, post transplant tissue rejection, several neurological disorders, such as traumatic brain injury, chemobrain and Alzheimer?s disease, and infectious diseases.