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Title:Development of high performance single photon emission computed tomography systems for simultaneous nuclear molecular imaging and magnetic resonance imaging
Author(s):Lai, Xiaochun
Director of Research:Meng, Ling-Jian
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Meng, Ling-Jian
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Sullivan, Clair Julia; Uddin, Rizwan; Dobrucki, Wawrzyniec Lawrence
Department / Program:Nuclear, Plasma, & Rad Engr
Discipline:Nuclear, Plasma, Radiolgc Engr
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):Cadmium tellurium (CdTe)
Cadmium zinc tellurium (CZT)
Energy resolved photon counting detector
Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)
MR compatible SPECT
Compound eye gamma camera
SPECT/MRI
Nuclear molecular imaging
Cell imaging
Abstract:Simultaneous nuclear molecular imaging (NMI) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) have great potential for pre-clinical and clinical applications, especially for cell imaging in brain cancer models. We have pursued an intensive research effort to develop high-performance single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) systems for simultaneous NMI/MRI. This kind of system has sub-mm and even higher resolving power that allows a matched resolution for SPECT and MRI to visualize details about cell retention and migration, and provides a significant improvement of system sensitivity, even comparable with the sensitivity of positron emission tomography (PET), enabling detection of a small number of cells. The first key step to develop a high-performance SPECT system was building the first generation MR- compatible SPECT, called MRC-SPECT-I, which was a stationary full-ring system, consisting of forty MR- compatible, energy-resolved, photon-counting, and highly-pixelated CdTe semiconductor detectors. Preliminary studies demonstrated the system ability to track as few as 400 neural stem cells in a mouse brain with a sub-500 µm resolution. Although the MRC-SPECT-I was a state-of-the-art SPECT system, to further improve SPECT performance for simultaneous NMI and MRI, an inverted compound-eye (ICE) gamma-ray camera was proposed here for SPECT imaging applications and experimentally verified through a prototype system. The MRC-SPECT-II was designed utilizing 24 ICE gamma camera modules and consisted of more than 1,500 micro-pinhole cameras. The simulation results verified that the MRC-SPECT-II system was more than ten times as sensitive as conventional SPECT systems were while retaining a sub-500 µm resolving capability. Combining the high sensitivity of the SPECT system and the high soft tissue contrast and temporal resolution of MRI, simultaneous SPECT/MRI provides an attractive platform for functional and cell imaging of a wide range of disease models, such as cancers and neurodegenerative diseases.
Issue Date:2016-09-27
Type:Thesis
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/95457
Rights Information:Copyright 2016 Xiaochun Lai
Date Available in IDEALS:2017-03-01
Date Deposited:2016-12


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