The HyperImage project is a collaborative research project financed by the European Commission in the context of the 7th Framework Programme. The project drives the development of a brand new system for simultaneous whole-body PET/MR imaging for humans. The goal is not only to improve the existing diagnostic applications, but also to open up new fields in therapy guidance and therapy response monitoring. The consortium behind HyperImage comprises a leading medical company –Philips, coordinator of the project-, a small-medium-sized entreprise, and a total of five academic partners and public research organisations -one of which is the CNIC- from five EU member states.
The project is divided into three major research areas: hardware development, systems analysis development, and pre-clinical and clinical validation. The scientific-technical objectives that we aim to achieve in the context of HyperImage are the following in particular:
- Development of MR compatible detector technology with ultra-high time resolution
- Development of concurrent PET/MR test systems
- Development of 4D PET/MR motion, attenuation, and functional data acquisition techniques
- PET/MR test and validation in preclinical studies towards cancer and cardiovascular diseases (CVD)
- First clinical whole body PET/MR investigations towards breast cancer.
With this novel PET/MR imaging system we hope to overcome shortcomings of other currently existing imaging modalities. We aim to achieve excellent human anatomical information, superior soft tissue characterization, and temporal resolution and believe that -if our goals will be achieved- PET/MR systems will dramatically improve the way to diagnose and to treat human disease.