New imaging system available at the Life Sciences Annex

News for Researchers

Posted October 2, 2019 by Tiffany Lee

With Nebraska Research Initiative funding and institutional support, the Institutional Animal Care Program Service Center purchased a Quantum GX2 microCT Imaging System. The new equipment, located in the Life Sciences Annex, is available to all faculty.

The system’s flexibility enables longitudinal studies across a wide range of species and samples, with high-speed, high-resolution scanning in vivo. It also meets an urgent need for increasing throughput of live animal micro CT imaging in lab animals that weigh up to 5 kg (e.g., whole rabbits), and will serve as a high-resolution ex vivo specimen scanner (2.3 mm) for sample validation.

The system offers increased imaging fields of view for larger samples in vivo and enables high-resolution imaging of ex vivo samples. A manual X-ray filter assembly provides opportunities to optimize imaging protocols. With its high-resolution, high-speed integrated platform, the Quantum GX2 enables a better understanding of disease across a broad range of areas, including orthopedics, cardiovascular, pulmonary and oncology research, as well as contrast agent development.

Data collection modes include fluoroscopy for sample positioning and computed tomography for 3D analysis. X-ray exposure levels are low, with repeated CT scans used in longitudinal imaging studies, which minimally impacts animal pathophysiology. Scan times are rapid enough to enable the use of human contrast agents before physiological clearing in small animals, a significant cost saver. The combination of fast scan times and fast, automatic reconstruction allows for high-throughput image acquisition and data analysis. 

Animal care is assured through a computer-controlled adjustable stage incorporating the delivery of gas anesthesia and catheter lines for delivery of drugs or contrast agents. Because of the mouse imaging shuttle, built-in fiducial markers and a streamlined Living Image co-registration software module, co-registration with 3D optical is simplified.

The technology complements other imaging systems available at the university, such as the LI-COR Pearl Impulse small animal imaging system, iBox Scientia small animal imaging system, Bruker minispec Body Composition Analyzer and digital X-ray.

Contact Bayliegh Bohn, IACP Service Center facility supervisor, to schedule an imaging session.

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