30-ton superconducting magnet to further brain research

Hold onto your keys, car-sized magnet to further brain research at NYU School of Medicine.

The 30-ton, superconducting magnet that forms the center of a 7-Tesla MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) system developed by Siemens Medical Solutions will be uncrated and moved by crane from a truck into the New York University School of Medicine’s Center for Biomedical Imaging this Friday morning. This Siemens 7-Tesla MRI will be the most powerful MRI machine in the New York metropolitan area and one of only a handful of such big magnets available for clinical research in the world.

This 7-Tesla magnet holds some 200 miles of superconducting wire and is 140,000 times stronger than the earth's magnetic field. The octagon-shaped steel shield that will surround the magnet at NYU will contain its stray magnetic field.

This unique MRI machine will allow collaborative researchers from NYU, Brookhaven National Labs, Johns Hopkins University, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York and the Nathan S. Kline Institute to obtain incredibly detailed snapshots of metabolic pathways in the living brain, leading to a far better understanding of how the brain's metabolism is affected by disease. This information could lead to earlier diagnosis and treatment of a variety of diseases, including multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease, and ultimately may help prevent the progression of these debilitating brain diseases.

WHO: Joseph A. Helpern Ph.D., Vice Chairman for Research for the Department of Radiology at NYU Medical School and Director of the Center for Advanced Brain Imaging, is available for media interviews during the 7-Tesla uncrating and move.

WHEN: Friday, May 21, 2004; 10:00 a.m. EDT

WHERE: New York University School of Medicine
Center for Biomedical Imaging
650 First Avenue
New York, NY 10016

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