Navigation Links
Miniature 'wearable' PET scanner ready for use
Date:3/13/2011

UPTON, NY - Scientists from the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory, Stony Brook University, and collaborators have demonstrated the efficacy of a "wearable," portable PET scanner they've developed for rats. The device will give neuroscientists a new tool for simultaneously studying brain function and behavior in fully awake, moving animals.

The researchers describe the tool and validation studies in the April 2011 issue of Nature Methods.

"Positron emission tomography (PET) is a powerful tool for studying the molecular processes that occur in the brain," said Paul Vaska, head of PET physics at Brookhaven with a joint appointment at Stony Brook, who led the development of the portable scanner together with Brookhaven colleagues David Schlyer and Craig Woody. PET studies in animals at Brookhaven and elsewhere have helped to uncover the molecular underpinnings of conditions such as drug addiction.

But studying animals with PET has required general anesthesia or other methods to immobilize the animals. "Immobilization and anesthesia make it impossible to simultaneously study neurochemistry and the animals' behavior - the actions resulting from what goes on in the brain," Schlyer said. "Our approach was to eliminate the need for restraint by developing a PET scanner that would move with the animal, thus opening up the possibility of directly correlating the imaging data with behavioral data acquired at the same time."

After several years of development, the scientists have arrived at a design for a miniature, portable, donut-shaped PET scanner that can be "worn" like a collar on a rat's head for simultaneous studies of brain function and behavior. Weighing only 250 grams, the device - dubbed RatCAP, for Rat Conscious Animal PET - is counterbalanced by a system of springs and motion stabilizers to allow the animal significant freedom of movement. Measurements of the rats' stress hormones indicated only moderate and temporary increases.

"Rats wearing the device appear to adapt well and move freely about their environment," Woody said.

To validate the use of the wearable scanner for simultaneous studies of brain function and behavior, the scientists conducted tests with 11C-raclopride, a commonly used PET radiotracer, which incorporates a radioactive, positron-emitting isotope of the element carbon. When the positrons interact with electrons in ordinary matter, they immediately annihilate one another, emitting back-to-back gamma rays. Detectors in the circular PET scanner pick up the signals from these back-to-back gamma rays to identify the location and concentration of the tracer in the body.

The tracer 11C-raclopride binds to receptors for dopamine, a brain chemical involved in movement, reward, and memory formation. A higher signal from the tracer means that less natural dopamine is in that particular part of the brain; a low signal indicates that that particular part of the brain has released dopamine (which binds to its receptors, thus blocking the tracer from binding).

The main test was to see if the wearable scanner could be used to correlate dopamine levels with behavior - in this case, the rats' activity (i.e., movement) within their chambers. Surprisingly the level of activity was inversely related to dopamine levels - that is, the more active the animals were, the lower the level of dopamine (as indicated by a stronger tracer signal).

"This is perhaps a counterintuitive result because behavioral activation is typically associated with an increase in dopamine release," said Daniela Schulz, a Brookhaven behavioral neuroscientist and lead author of the paper. "So our method provides data which may challenge traditional paradigms and ultimately improve our understanding of the dopamine system."

"But regardless of the direction, the results clearly demonstrate that RatCAP can correlate brain function measurements with behavioral measures in a useful way," she said.

The scientists also present results comparing RatCAP-wearing rats moving freely about their cages with animals that had been anesthetized, as well as comparisons of two methods of administering the tracer - injecting it all at once and in a steady infusion to maintain a constant concentration in the blood.

"These measurements will help us further refine the technique and aid in our assessment of results obtained with RatCAP in comparison with other study techniques," Schulz said.

The researchers' next step will be to use RatCAP to explore distinct behavioral expressions that can be correlated with simultaneously acquired PET data.

The research was funded by the DOE Office of Science. Development of RatCAP was a joint effort between Brookhaven's Medical, Chemistry and Physics Departments, Instrumentation Division and the Biomedical Engineering Department at Stony Brook University. Co-authors on the paper include: Daniela Schulz (Brookhaven), Sudeepti Southekal (Brigham & Women's Hospital, Boston),Sachin S. Junnarkar (Brookhaven), Jean-Franois Pratte (Universit de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada), Martin L. Purschke (Brookhaven), Paul O'Connor (Brookhaven), Sean P. Stoll (Brookhaven), Bosky Ravindranath (Stony Brook), Sri Harsha Maramraju (Stony Brook), Srilalan Krishnamoorthy (Stony Brook), Fritz A. Henn (Brookhaven and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory), Craig L. Woody (Brookhaven), and David J. Schlyer and Paul Vaska (Brookhaven and Stony Brook).

All research involving laboratory animals at Brookhaven National Laboratory is conducted under the jurisdiction of the Lab's Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC, http://www.bnl.gov/ora/IACUC.asp) in compliance with the Public Heath Service (PHS) Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/olaw/references/phspol.htm), the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal Welfare Act (http://www.nal.usda.gov/awic/legislat/usdaleg1.htm), and the National Academy of Sciences' Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (http://www.nap.edu/readingroom/books/labrats/). This research has enhanced understanding of a wide array of human medical conditions including cancer, drug addiction, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, and normal aging and has led to the development of several promising treatment strategies.

One of ten national laboratories overseen and primarily funded by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Brookhaven National Laboratory conducts research in the physical, biomedical, and environmental sciences, as well as in energy technologies and national security. Brookhaven Lab also builds and operates major scientific facilities available to university, industry and government researchers. Brookhaven is operated and managed for DOE's Office of Science by Brookhaven Science Associates, a limited-liability company founded by the Research Foundation of State University of New York on behalf of Stony Brook University, the largest academic user of Laboratory facilities, and Battelle, a nonprofit, applied science and technology organization.

Visit Brookhaven Lab's electronic newsroom for links, news archives, graphics, and more at http://www.bnl.gov/newsroom , or follow Brookhaven Lab on Twitter, http://twitter.com/BrookhavenLab .


'/>"/>
Contact: Karen McNulty Walsh
kmcnulty@bnl.gov
631-344-8350
DOE/Brookhaven National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Clinical trial underway: Miniature ultrasound device could revolutionize pain relief
2. Vital functions monitored with wearable and implantable devices
3. The Results Are In: Users of BodyMedia's Wearable Body-Monitoring Technology Lose 3 Times More Weight
4. Airport Body Scanners Safe, Experts Say
5. Portable breast scanner allows cancer detection in the blink of an eye
6. UT Southwestern unveils next generation CT scanner that views whole organs in a heartbeat
7. FDA Hears Views on Risks of High Tech Scanners
8. Ready to Talk to Your Teen About Alcohol?
9. Med School Grads May Not Be Ready for Primary Care
10. Are we ready for medical treatment based on a patients racial and ethnic background?
11. Improved treatment access requires end to portrayal of drug abusers as already dead
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... While it’s often important to ... Fortunately, an inventor from Austin, Texas, has identified a solution. , She developed a ... or restricted lighting. As such, it eliminates the need to turn on a light ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... Lori R. ... a member of ElderCounsel, a national organization of elder law and special needs planning ... laws and rules. It also provides a forum to network with elder law attorneys ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare Management’s 4th Annual ... in Milford, NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare Management’s CEO, Jon ... fun run is geared towards children of all ages; it is a non-competitive, non-timed ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... “America On The Brink”: the Christian history of the United States and ... of published author, William Nowers. Captain Nowers and his wife, Millie, have six ... years in the Navy. Following his career as a naval aviator and carrier ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Fla. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... IsoComforter, ... therapy products, announced today the introduction of an innovative new design of the shoulder ... pad so you get maximum comfort while controlling your pain while using cold therapy. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc. (NYSE: ... drug administration, today announced that it will release third-quarter ... October 26, 2017, and will follow with a conference ... 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time. To participate on the call, ... ID is 94093362. ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... Oct. 11, 2017  Caris Life Sciences ® , ... the promise of precision medicine, today announced that St. ... Precision Oncology Alliance™ (POA) as its 17 th ... St. Jude Crosson Cancer Institute will help develop standards ... of tumor profiling, making cancer treatment more precise and ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... 2017  Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. ("Hill-Rom") (NYSE: HRC), today ... Las Piedras, Puerto Rico , where ... Following a comprehensive ... minor structural damage, temporary loss of power and minimal ... completed, manufacturing operations have resumed, and the company expects ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: