18/10/2021

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Innovative contrast agents for more… – Information Centre – Research & Innovation

EU-funded scientists have designed an progressive and ‘smart’ prototype contrast system for use in health-related imaging that could present medical professionals with important new insights to help diagnose injury and ailment.


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Up to date on seventeen July 2020

The EU-funded CONQUER job concentrated on improving and growing the flexibility of contrast brokers. These are substances that can be administered prior to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans to a lot more obviously and exactly distinguish various tissues and fluids in the physique: from muscle, cartilage and nerves to most cancers tumours and the motion of blood by way of arteries, veins and the brain.

The know-how is indispensable for being familiar with and diagnosing ailment as very well as establishing new treatment options. Even so, the use of contrast mechanisms in MRI scans has been confined due to the fact of time and value elements, as very well as fears about exposure to some brokers these as those people primarily based on the uncommon-earth factor gadolinium.

The CONQUER group as a result sought greater and smarter possibilities, including contrast brokers that can be turned on or off remotely by modifying magnetic fields in purchase to make scans of various tissues a lot more exact and adaptable.

‘We have supplied a evidence of theory for a new contrast system that presents two rewards. We now have the possible to swap the contrast on and off, and we use an alternate agent to gadolinium about which there is open up debate all-around possible toxicity concerns,’ states job coordinator Hermann Scharfetter at Graz University of Technologies in Austria.

The CONQUER team’s exploration concentrated on a adaptable contrast procedure known as ‘quadrupole peace enhancement’ which performs on the basis of how alerts generated by the spins of protons within tissues decay, or ‘relax’, more than time as they interact with the contrast agent. Instead of gadolinium-primarily based substances, the CONQUER group utilized novel bismuth-primarily based brokers.

‘We have confirmed for the initial time that quadrupole peace improvement of solvent protons by the spin of bismuth nuclei is possible in liquids. This opens up novel avenues for further more exploration in this region,’ Scharfetter states.

To aid the use of new contrast brokers, the job associates also designed new equipment for MRI scanners, including novel components that have been fitted experimentally to a clinical 3T MRI scanner, and which have resulted in a patent application.

Scharfetter and his group are continuing exploration in the region with new jobs in the pipeline, driving ahead promising locations of study concentrated in unique on optimising nanoparticles in novel contrast brokers. This ongoing operate could substantially boost the capacity of MRI know-how to generate a deeper being familiar with of ailment and even a lot more successful and exact diagnoses for sufferers.