John Hopkins researchers create novel optical imaging equipment for use on SARRP research platform

Researchers from John Hopkins University have created an innovative piece of optical imaging equipment for use on-board the Xstrahl Small Animal Radiation Research Platform (SARRP).

As demonstrated at the International Conference on Translational Research in Radio-Oncology (ICTR) in Geneva, Switzerland (February 10 – 14th), researchers at John Hopkins University presented the novel optical imaging equipment to the conference attendees. 

The system uses Computed Tomography (CT) and Diffuse Optical Tomography (DOT) priors for the reconstruction (Reference: An integrated x-ray/optical tomography system for pre-clinical radiation research, S. Eslami et al). Using DOT the optical properties are calculated, providing a more accurate location for the light source. This is fundamentally important in targeting as it has far greater positional accuracy compared to multispectral Bioluminescence Imaging alone. This model for optical and molecular imaging is much more accessible for researchers conducting irradiation studies on SARRP away from imaging centres. Combining DOT and an innovative rotating three mirror system, the researchers have been able to create 3D Bioluminescence and Fluorescence images. In an effort to achieve more detailed imaging, they created a platform on wheels that rolls directly to their SARRP for easy fusion between optical and Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT) images. Testing showed that the researchers were able to achieve Bioluminescence and Fluorescence images simultaneously with submillimetric accuracy. This will offer additional options for obtaining the best results possible using either imaging modality based on user preference. 

ICTR-PHE 2014 was well attended by an international audience and featured numerous simultaneous lectures focusing on various aspects of radiation research, including normal tissue effects of radiation, DNA damage response, advances in combined therapies and cancer treatment, environmental radiobiology, hypoxia, radioresistance, dosimetry and ethics.

Xstrahl would like to thank the organisers and attendees for their interest and look forward to meeting collaborators and scientists at the next ICTR-PHE conference.

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