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First Philips Achieva 7.0T research system operational

Clinical News
MRI NetForum Team Philips Healthcare Philips Global

 

In support of its research partners at several distinguished clinical institutions worldwide, Philips has recently completed the design and construction of the world's first Achieva 7.0T at the Ultra High Field Research Facility at Philips Medical Systems, Cleveland, Ohio, USA. This investigational whole-body 7.0T MR system will provide unprecedented signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for a variety of demanding research applications.

 

Completion of the first Achieva 7.0T research installation at The Ohio State University (Columbus, Ohio, U.S.A.) is anticipated in the first quarter of 2005. Two additional research sites, the University of Nottingham (U.K.), home of Nobel Prize winner, Sir Peter Mansfield, and Vanderbilt University, (Nashville, Tenn., USA), have made commitments, and additional commitments are in the final stages of negotiation.

 

"There is great interest in using higher field strength MRI for molecular imaging and in the drug creation process," says John Patrick, Ph.D., director, business development at PMS Cleveland.

 

"For example, 7.0T's SNR enables high spatial resolution that could be useful in monitoring anti-angiogenesis drugs by enabling visualization of small blood vessels."

 

John Patrick, Ph.D. Achieva 7.0T Artist's conception
John Patrick, Ph.D.
Achieva 7.0T
Artist's conception
Dr. Patrick says the SNR gains at 7.0T will be substantial. "Available studies show that, at least for some applications, 7.0T will provide up to 2.3 times more SNR than 3.0T," he says. "It will enable even higher resolution and faster scan times - particularly when using the SENSE technique, which will afford even higher acceleration factors at 7.0T."

 

He adds that functional MRI studies using the BOLD technique will also benefit from greatly increased magnetic susceptibility, enabling higher resolution in these studies.

Investment in total systems approach

Imaging subjects at 7.0T presents many challenges. While Philips' SENSE and RF-SMART techniques provide a basis for addressing some of these concerns, many key components and imaging techniques used in 1.5T or 3.0T systems are simply inadequate for 7.0T.

 

"We have started from a virtually blank sheet of paper on every field strength dependent subsystem," Dr. Patrick explains. "An example is the gradient subsystem, where the gradient coil has been designed and implemented from scratch for 7.0T operation. We have directly addressed the gradient issues, which have plagued nearly every existing 7.0T human imaging system. For the RF subsystem, we have engaged scientists at the Philips Hamburg Advanced Research Lab, who are leaders in RF coil design for high frequency applications, such as 7.0T."

 

"Although Achieva 7.0T will help advance research, the experience of designing and developing the ultra-high field system will concomitantly enhance technological innovation across all Philips field strengths, as did 3.0T development for lower field strengths," he observes. "We see the development of the Achieva 7.0T research platform and techniques as contributing to all Philips MR systems."

Note:

The Achieva 7.0T system is not commercially available.


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