Medical Imaging Center (MIC)

Multi-modality imaging facilities from Radiology and Nuclear Medicine. Facility
MIC provides the medical imaging infrastructure and support for state-of-art research, from pre-clinical studies to clinical trials. We offer broad multidisciplinary expertise on medical imaging like PET, SPECT, CT and MRI to support researchers of the UMCG, RUG, and external partners.
  • Molecular imaging with PET or SPECT enables visualization and quantification of physiological processes inside the body by injecting a radioactively labeled tracer and monitoring its distribution with a dedicated scanner.
  • MRI uses a strong magnetic field and short radiowaves to generate images of structures inside the body. There are also MRI procedures that can generate information about tissue function. 
  • A CT scanner uses X-rays to generate images of the body, based on tissue density. Contrast agents may be used for MRI and CT scans.

How to use our equipment

Before you can use our equipment and facilities, your project has to be evaluated by an internal committee. Please contact our MIC Project Management Office for further information.

We always evaluate new requests first. Before you can start using our equipment or facilities we will make an agreement. Our assigned instructors will provide training when necessary.

  • At the MIC, we have advanced imaging equipment and facilities to perform cutting-edge preclinical and clinical research. In addition, we can provide support to researchers, enabling them to get most out of their studies. To this purpose, we can offer a range of services, including:

    • Advice on optimal imaging techniques, procedures, and study design
    • Execution of clinical imaging procedures
    • (Training for) execution of preclinical scans
    • Development and validation of tracers
    • Data management support
    • Data transfer
    • Data analysis training and support 
    • Project management
    • Contract research
    • Extensive experience with studies for pharmaceutical industries
    • Close collaboration with nearby Contract Research Organizations
    • High quality standards: 
      • GMP manufacturing license 
      • GCP training
      • NEN-EN-ISO 9001-2008 certified 
      • 4-star European Foundation of Quality Management Award
    • For more information, please contact: 
      • Prof. Dr. Erik F.J. de Vries for PET and SPECT (email)
      • Dr. Ronald J.H. Borra  for MRI (email)
      • Dr. Paula Kopschina Feltes for project management (email)
    • Researchers are advised to contact a staff member of the MIC (see: bottom of this website) to discuss the optimal imaging procedures for the research question at hand.
    • The (draft) study protocol, together with the completely filled-out MIC application form, has to be sent to the MIC (email) for review. For studies with complex imaging procedures, it is advised to send the study protocol to the MIC before submission to the ethical review board (METc).
    • Clinical studies with imaging procedures or interventions at the MIC will be reviewed by the Research Assessment Committee (RAC). 
    • The RAC will in particular assess the suitability of the proposed imaging modality, the feasibility of the requested procedures and the available capacity. 
    • After review by the RAC, a letter of agreement with the tariffs will be sent to the investigator.
    • The investigator should send the final study protocol, local feasibility (if applicable) and the approval letter of the METc to the MIC (email) before the start of the study.
    • In case of imaging procedures that are not standard of care, a kick-off meeting with relevant staff members of the MIC should be planned by the principle investigator. 
    • The small animal imaging equipment of the MIC (PET, PET/CT, and PET/MRI) is located in the GronSAI facility within the premises of Central Animal Facilities (CDP) of the UMCG
    • For advice on preclinical imaging procedures and study design, please contact Dr. Janine Doorduin (email)
    • Before reservations for the preclinical imaging equipment can be made, the CCD and IvD protocols have to be sent to Dr. Janine Doorduin (email) and Ing. Jurgen W.A. Sijbesma (email). It is advised to send the concept protocols already for review to the MIC before submitting them CCD and IvD to avoid having to make unnecessary amendments.
    • For individual training on the use of the preclinical imaging equipment and experimental procedures, please contact Ing. Jurgen W.A. Sijbesma (email)
    • For making reservations for the use of the preclinical imaging equipment, please contact Ing. Jurgen W.A. Sijbesma (email)
    • The MIC can provide training in and support with data management and storage of imaging and related data. 
    • The MIC can help to anonymize and transfer scans to external parties. 
    • Advanced imaging procedures often require sophisticated data analysis with dedicated software packages. The MIC can advise on data analysis methodology and train researchers in performing the analyses.
    • For support on data management, data transfer and data analysis, please contact the Project Management Office (email)
  • Services are subject to a fee, which depends on the type of procedures and services requested. Therefore, it is highly recommended to contact the MIC (email) about the expected costs before signing a contract, submitting a grant proposal, or initiating a new study. 

Cyclotron

  • For the production of:

    • [15O]water(half-life 2 min)
    • [13N]ammonia(half-life 10 min)
    • [11C]CO2 or [11C]methane(half-life 20 min)
    • [18F]fluoride or [18F]fluorine gas(half-life 110 min)

Tracer production facilities

  • In particular:

    • Short-lived PET tracers labeled with 11C, 13N, 15O, 18F, or 68Ga
    • Long-lived PET tracers labeled with 89Zr (mainly antibodies and derivatives)
    • SPECT tracers labeled with 99mTc, 111In, or 123/131I
    • Radiolabeled autologous blood cells
    • Tracers for radionuclide therapy labeled with e.g. 177Lu (envisioned for Q1 - 2021)
  • For:

    • Production of PET tracers for preclinical imaging studies
    • Implementation and automation of new tracer production processes
    • Development of new PET tracers
    • Fundamental radiochemistry
  • For:

    • Quality control of PET and SPECT tracers
    • Analysis of blood and urine samples

PET tracers

  • For human use:

    • [11C]-Choline: Membrane synthesis
    • [11C]-DASB: Serotonin transporters
    • [11C]-Flumazenil: GABAA receptors
    • [11C]-MeDAS: Myelin basic protein (myelin density)
    • [11C]-Methionine: Amino acid transport (protein synthesis)
    • [11C]-Methylreboxetine: Norepinephrine transporters
    • [11C]-PIB: Amyloid plaques
    • [11C]-PK11195: TSPO receptors (neuroinflammation)
    • [11C]-Raclopride: Dopamine D2 receptors
    • [11C]-UCB-J: Synaptic vesicle protein 2A (synaptic density)

    For preclinical imaging only:

    • [11C]-Deprenyl-d2: Monoamine oxidase B (astrocytosis)
    • [11C]-PBR28: TSPO receptors (neuroinflammation)
    • [11C]-Preladenant: Adenosine A2A receptors
    • [11C]-Verapamil: P-glycoprotein
  • For human use:

    • [13N]-Ammonia: Myocardial perfusion
    • [15O]-Water: Blood flow (brain / heart)
  • For human use:

    • [18F]-Canagliflozine: Sodium-glucose transporter 2
    • [18F]-FDG: Glucose metabolism
    • [18F]-FDHT: Androgen receptor
    • [18F]-FDOPA: Amino acid decarboxylase (dopamine synthesis)
    • [18F]-FEOBV: Vesicular acetylcholine transporters    
    • [18F]-FES: Estrogen receptor
    • [18F]-IL2: IL2 receptor (activate T lymphocytes)
    • [18F]-MC225: P-glycoprotein
    • [18F]-NaF: Degenerative or neoplastic bone (bone metastases)
    • [18F]-PSMA1007: Prostate-specific membrane antigen (prostate cancer)

    For preclinical imaging only:

    • [18F]-FAZA: Hypoxia
    • [18F]-FLT: DNA synthesis
    • [18F]-FHBG: Herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase
  • For human use:

    • [68Ga]-DOTATOC: Somatostatin receptors
  • For human use:

    • [89Zr]-DFO-Trastuzumab (Herceptin): HER-2 receptors
    • [89Zr]-DFO-Atezolizumab (Tecentriq): Programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1)
    • [89Zr]-DFO-Pembrolizumab (Keytruda): Programmed cell death receptor 1 (PD-1)
    • [89Zr]-DFO-antibodies: For specific clinical trials (upon request)

    For preclinical imaging only:

    • [89Zr]-DFO-antibodies: For specific studies (upon request)

SPECT tracers

    • [99mTc]-Albumin aggregates (Maasol): Lung perfusion
    • [99mTc]-CMC (carboxymethyl-cellulose): Gastric emptying
    • [99mTc]-DMSA (Succimer): Kidney function
    • [99mTc]-HDP (Technescan): Degenerative or neoplastic bone (bone metastases)
    • [99mTc]-HMPAO (Exametazim/Ceretec): Cerebral perfusion
    • [99mTc]-HSA (human serum albumin): Gastrointestinal protein loss
    • [99mTc]-Mebrofenin (Bridatec): Hepatobiliary function
    • [99mTc]-Nanocolloid (NanoScan): Inflammatory foci, bone marrow
    • [99mTc]-NephroMag: Kidney function
    • [99mTc]-Pertechnetate: Thyroid
    • [99mTc]-Sestamibi: Myocardial perfusion, parathyroid gland
    • [99mTc]-Tetrofosmin (Myoview): Myocardial perfusion
    • [123I]-MIBG: Myocardial sympathetic innervation, neuroblastoma
    • [123I]-SAP: Amyloidosis
    • [125I]-Iothalamate: Glomerular filtration
    • [131I]-HSA: Blood and plasma volumes, perfusion leaks
    • [131I]-Hippuran: Effective renal plasma flow
    • [131I]-Norcholesterol: Adrenal function
    • 99mTc-labeled leukocytes: Infection, inflammation
    • 99mTc-labeled erythrocytes: Blood pool imaging
    • 99mTc-labeled erythrocytes (denatured): Spleen imaging

Radiopharmaceuticals for radionuclide therapy

    • [90Y]-Yttrium citrate colloid: Hypertrophy of synovial membrane, bone metastases
    • [90Y]-Yttrium microspheres: Hepatocellular carcinoma
    • [131I]-MIBG: Neuroblastoma, Pheochromocytoma, Carcinoid tumors, Paraganglioma, Medullary thyroid cancer
    • [131I]-NaI: Thyroid cancers, Hyperthyroidism
    • [153Sm]-EDTMP (Quadramet): Osteoblastic skeletal metastases
    • [223Ra]-Radium dichloride: Symptomatic bone metastases, Prostate cancer
    • [177Lu]-compounds: For specific clinical trials
    • [227Th]-compound: For specific clinical trial
    • [177Lu]-PSMA (available soon): Prostate cancer
    • [177Lu]-DOTATATE (available soon): Neuroendocrine tumors

Positron Emission Tomography (PET/CT) scanners

    • Crystals: 3.2 mm LSO crystals
    • Detector elements: Silicon Photomultipliers (SiPM) Axial
    • FOV: 26.1 cm
    • TOF resolution: 210-215 ps
    • CT: 128 Edge-slice
    • Crystals: 4 mm LSO crystals
    • Detector elements: Photomultiplier tubes Axial
    • FOV: 22.1 cm
    • TOF resolution: 540 ps
    • CT: 40 or 64 Edge-slice
  • Installation envisioned for Q3 - 2021.

    • Crystals: 4 mm LSO crystals
    • Detector elements: Photomultiplier tubes
    • Axial FOV: 22.1 cm
    • TOF resolution: 540 ps
    • CT:40 Edge-slice

SPECT scanners

    • Variable-angle camera for cardiac, oncology, neurological, and general SPECT/CT imaging
    • Crystals: 59.1 x 44.5 cm
    • Detector elements: Bialkali high-efficiency box-type dynodes
    • FOV: 53.3 cm
    • Number of slices: 16
  • The Hologic Discovery DXA system enables you to identify patients at risk for osteoporosis and other debilitating conditions.

    • Variable-angle camera for cardiac, oncology, neurological, and general SPECT/CT imaging
    • Crystals: 59.1 x 44.5 cm
    • Detector elements: Bialkali high-efficiency box-type dynodes
    • FOV: 53.3 cm
    • Number of slices: 2

Bone density scanners (DEXA)

    • Dual Energy X-ray absorption (DEXA) bone densitometry
    • The Hologic Discovery DXA system enables you to identify patients at risk for osteoporosis and other debilitating conditions.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanners

    • Field strength: 1.5 Tesla
    • Bore size: 70 cm Open Bore design
    • Gradient strength: XJ Gradients (33 mT/m @ 125 T/m/s) , XQ Gradients (45 mT/m @ 200 T/m/s)
    • Field strength: 3 Tesla
    • Bore size: 70 cm Open Bore design
    • Gradient strength: XQ Gradients (45 mT/m @ 200 T/m/s)
    • Field strength: 3 Tesla
    • Bore size: 60 cm
    • Gradient strength: XR Gradients (80 mT/m @ 200 T/m/s)

Computed Tomography (CT) scanners

    • Single Source CT scanner
    • Gantry opening: 78 cm
    • Multislice UFCTM (Ultra Fast Ceramic) Detector
    • 64 slices
    • Isotropic resolution: 0.33 mm
    CT scanner AS
    • Dual source CT scanner
    • Gantry opening: 78 cm
    • 2 x StellarInfinity detectors
    • 256 (2 x 128) slices
    • Isotropic resolution: 0.33 mm
    • Dual source CT scanner
    • Ultra-low-dose scanning
    • Gantry opening: 78 cm
    • 2 x VectronTM X-ray tubes
    • 2 x StellarInfinity detectors with anti-scatter 3D collimator grid
    • 384 (2 x 192) slices
    • Spatial resolution: 0.24 mm

Multispectral optoacoustic tomography (MSOT)

    • Optoacoustic + Ultrasound (OPUS) imaging mode
    • Frame rate: up to 50 Hz (optoacoustic), up to 20 Hz (ultrasound)
    • Laser wavelength: 680-980 nm / 660-1300 nm
    • Peak pulse energy: 30 mJ
    • Spatial resolution: 80-400 µm (detector-dependent)

Small animal imaging

    • Axial FOV: 7.6 cm
    • Transaxial FOV: 19 cm
    • Resolution at center of FOV: <1.3 mm
    • Volumetric resolution (central 8 cm): < 9 µl
    • System sensitivity: 4%
    • Respiritory and cardiac gating
    • Interchangable beds for mice and rats
    • Axial FOV: 9.6 cm (co-scan range for docked system)
    • Transaxial FOV: 10 cm
    • PET: Resolution at center of FOV: 1.4 mm
    • PET: System sensitivity: 10%
    • CT: Maximum spatial resolution @10% MTF: ≤ 40 μm with 3.2 x 2.1 cm FOV
  • Installation envisioned for Q2/3 - 2021.

Contact

MIC Project Management Office

Universitair Medisch Centrum Groningen
Hanzeplein 1
Afdeling NGMB (Langstraat 4) HPC EB50
Postbus 30.001 
9700 RB Groningen

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