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UW Health SMPH
American Family Children's Hospital
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Services

Consultation

Animal housing for longitudinal imaging studies

Contrast agent information

Image acquisition

Image reconstruction

Retrieving data and data backup

Imaging software

Image analysis training

Manuscript and presentation preparation

 

Consultation

 

The facility director and manager of the Small Animal Imaging Facility (SAIF) provide free consultation in determining which imaging methodologies are most suited to meet the investigator’s research objectives. The following are examples of parameters that can be tailored in an imaging study:

  • Number of subjects per group
  • Animal diet and temperature
  • Anesthesia
  • Imaging modality
  • Contrast agent
  • Imaging time points
  • Scan duration
  • Gating
  • Temporal and spatial resolution
  • Static or dynamic framing
  • Image reconstruction

 Animal housing for longitudinal imaging studies

  • To preserve the pathological integrity of the Laboratory Animal Resources (LAR) facilities, investigators are required to transfer their animals to the micro-imaging protocol (M02169) by completing the animal transfer form. Only after approval from LAR can animals be transported to WIMR B1334C. Radioactive animals will remain in the holding facility until the animals are euthanized and the experiment is completed. Under no circumstances are radioactive animals allowed to leave the facility for placement back into their original housing facility. Radioactive materials can only leave the imaging facility if approved by radiation safety. In approved cases, non-radioactive animals can be rehoused in a WIMR vivarium quarantine room.
  • The SAIF animal housing facility has a passively ventilated rodent cage system to ensure healthy maintenance of the animals. The facility is on an automatic 12hr dark/light cycle and the temperature, pressure and humidity are strictly regulated. Animal heath, bedding, food, and water are monitored twice per day and maintained as necessary by the SAIF and LAR staff.
  • Animals are permitted to be housed in the facility for long periods of time for longitudinal studies. No housing costs are applied in addition to the imaging rate if the animals are part of an imaging experiment. If the animals are not part of an imaging experiment, but are housed in the SAIF facility (ie. biodistribution study with radioactive agents), a housing fee of $2.50/cage/day will be applied. 

 

Contrast agent information

 

Radionuclide production, radiosynthesis and general radiopharmaceutical information

  • The SAIF does not provide radionuclide or radiosynthesis services. The Cyclotron Gang, located down the hall from the SAIF, can produce many radionuclides and radiotracers on a fee-for-service basis. Ask SAIF staff for other radiosynthesis inquiries not provided by the Cyclotron Gang.
  • For 18F-FDG PET imaging studies, IBA Molecular is a contracted vendor with the UW. If a user is conducting an 18F-FDG imaging study, SAIF staff will order directly and add the cost to the investigator bill. 18F-FDG is currently $155 for up to 10 mCi (price subject to change based on contract agreement).
  • Generally, for small studies (n<6) or pilot studies, residual clinical 18F-FDG is available for pre-clinical use free-of-charge. Please contact SAIF to inquire about this option.
  • Residual clinical 124I-CLR1404 may be available for pre-clinical use free-of-charge. Please contact the SAIF to inquire about this option.

CT contrast agents

  • Some CT contrast agents may be available from the clinical imaging suite. For example, Isovue, Omnipaque, Ultravist and barium may be available free-of-charge. Please contact SAIF staff for inquiries.
  • The following CT contrast agents are not provided by the SAIF but can be ordered by investigators directly from the vendor: Fenestra VC, Fenestra LC, Viscover nano12000, Viscover nano6000, Microfil, Ultravist. Barium solution can also be used for intestinal imaging. Consult with the SAIF before ordering CT contrast agents.

Optical contrast agents

  • The SAIF sells 1 mL aliquots of D-luciferin, potassium salt (30mg/mL) for $10 for bioluminescence imaging.
  • The SAIF can make recommendations on fluorescent tags/dyes/probes/agents but we do not provide or sell any.

Contrast agent development

  • The SAIF investigators are well-known in the development of cell-selective contrast agents useful for PET, CT, MRI and optical imaging.
  • For contrast agent development inquiries, please contact the SAIF director or manager.

Contrast agent injection

  • At no additional cost to the hourly image acquisition rates, the SAIF can inject contrast agents for all imaging modalities intravenously, retro-orbitally, intraperitoneally, subcutaneously, or by oral gavage
  • For PET radiopharmaceuticals, the SAIF records all injection information pertinent to quantitative analysis using a decay corrected injection form. We will provide a hard copy and/or digital version of this form for analysis.
  • Injection supplies are included for imaging studies only. Typical injection supplies include needles, syringes, catheters, chux, saline, vials, gauze, tape and isoflurane. 

Image acquisition

 

Micro-PET/CT imaging

  • The SAIF will operate PET/CT scanners. In some circumstances, the SAIF will train users to operate a scanner and other equipment necessary for image acquisition. Only trained and approved users can operate scanners. Unless specifically discussed with the investigator/researchers, the SAIF will choose the scanning parameters most ideal for the application. The scanners are normalized and calibrated on a regular scheduled basis. Isoflurane gas anesthesia is supplied to maintain animal sedation during PET/CT scanning only. PET/CT imaging is on a fee-for-service basis. Please see rates.

IVIS optical imaging

  • Since the IVIS is a “turn-key” piece of equipment, the SAIF will train users how to operate the scanner. Training takes about 30 minutes. Only after training can a user operate the scanner independently. The SAIF staff can also be available to help users with technical issues during acquisition. Although the SAIF staff can assist with many applications and imaging logistics, it is expected that the investigator understands how optical imaging will be optimized for their specific application. Isoflurane gas anesthesia is NOT supplied for the IVIS. Users are expected to bring their own isoflurane gas and add to the reservoir how much they expect to use. IVIS optical imaging is on a fee-for-service basis. Please see rates.

Fluobeam imaging

  • Since the Fluobeam is a “turn-key” piece of equipment, the SAIF will train users how to operate the scanner. Training takes about 15 minutes. Only after training can a user operate the scanner independently. The SAIF staff can also be available to help users during acquisition. Isoflurane gas anesthesia is NOT supplied for the IVIS. Users are expected to bring their own isoflurane gas and add to the reservoir how much they expect to use. There is no fee for using the Fluobeam.

Image reconstruction

  • The SAIF will reconstruct images to most accurately fulfill the demands of the study. Per investigator request, the SAIF staff will provide raw data to the researcher for reconstruction.
  • CT data can be reconstructed with down-sampling, beam-hardening correction, Hounsfield Units, bilinear or nearest-neighbor interpolation and various filters (Ramp, Shepp-Logan, Hamming).
  • There are no additional fees for image reconstruction time.
  • PET data is calibrated for quantification.
  • PET datasets can be reconstructed as a static image or dynamic time-binned frames using 2-dimensional filtered back projection (2DFBP), 2 and 3-dimensional ordered-subset expectation maximization (2DOSEM and 3DOSEM), OSEM3D/MAP, 3DRP and MAP TR. The following reconstruction parameters can also be manipulated:
    • Scatter correction
    • Projection filter (Butterworth – Order 1 and 2, Hamm, Hann, None, Parzen, Ramp, Shepp)
    • Iterations/MAP iterations
    • Smoothing

Retrieving data and data backup 

  • All data is automatically backed up to the Department of Radiology network every morning at 2am.
  • View instructions on how to access data from the Department of Radiology network.
  • The SAIF will grant permissions to the investigator user folder on the radiology network.
  • If an investigator has a radiology appointment they will have direct access to their data from any computer connected to the radiology network. These investigators can use their radiology login and password to access their data.
  • Investigators without a radiology appointment should contact the SAIF for a temporary login and password to access their data via the Department of Radiology network.
  • For virus protection
    • No thumb drives or external drives can be used in the SAIF to access data.
    • Users are not permitted to use the internet on the SAIF scanner computers. Please bring a personal laptop for internet use.
  • There are no additional fees for data backup. 

Imaging software

  • The SAIF provides three analysis workstations furnished with the following imaging software free-of-charge:
    • PET/CT: Inveon Research Workplace, VivoQuant, Amira, Image J, GIMP, Matab
    • IVIS: Living Image, VivoQuant, ImageJ, GIMP, MatLab
    • The analysis workstations are equipped with up to 64GB of RAM, dual 3.1 GHz processors, NVIDIA Quadro 4000 graphics cards, on a 64-bit Windows 7 OS to facilitate 2-D and 3-D image viewing, manipulation and quantitative analysis of large files.
    • The SAIF can easily convert imaging data to a universal DICOM format so investigators can perform analysis on their workstation. 

Image analysis training

  • The SAIF will train users to use the software that is provided on the analysis workstations. Due to the diversity of imaging applications, standard operating procedures for image analysis that can be applied to all studies do not exist. The SAIF will train users how to use the tools to conduct analysis, but it is ultimately the responsibility of the investigator to know what measurements are necessary to acquire the appropriate results.
  • The SAIF does not provide quantitative imaging analysis as a service. However, image analysis training is on a fee-for-service basis. Ask SAIF staff about other available resources for quantitative image analysis. Please see rates. 

Manuscript and presentation preparation

  • Any published research which received funding from the UWCCC Cancer Center Support Grant (CCSG), including the use of the SAIF to generate or analyze data or conduct clinical trials, must acknowledge the UWCCC. See Acknowledging UWCCC in Publications, Posters and Presentations.
  • Free of charge, the SAIF can help prepare images/videos for manuscripts and presentations for SAIF users.
  • Free of charge, the SAIF can help with data presentation for SAIF users.
  • Free of charge, the SAIF can provide advice and/or support writing grant applications, proposals and manuscripts for SAIF users. For example, the SAIF can assist in writing imaging methods or outlining budget plans for imaging studies.

PET CT image

PET-CT image
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