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Small-Animal Magnetic Resonance Facility

The Small Animal MR Facility includes a Bruker 9.4-T (400-MHz) MRI system, an Agilent/Varian DirectDrive 4.7-T (200-MHz) MRI system, and an Agilent/Varian DirectDrive 11.74-T (500-MHz) MRI system, all housed in on-grade adjoining suites.  The magnetic field strengths of BMRL scanners are substantially higher than generally encountered in clinical systems, typically 0.5 – 3.0 T.  Advantages of high field are chiefly related to signal-to-noise ratio gains, which translate into improved spatial or temporal resolution for imaging and improved accuracy of resonance amplitude and frequency estimates for spectroscopy.  Immediately adjacent to the MR scanner bays are animal holding and procedure rooms, a wet chemistry lab, an electronics lab and a climate-controlled room holding computer server and data archival devices.

The following links provide additional information about Small-Animal MR Facility resources:

MRI Scanners

RF Coils - The Facility maintains a substantial suite of commercial (manufactured by Stark Contrast, Agilent/Varian, Bruker, and Doty Scientific) and laboratory-constructed RF coils. These include a wide array of both quadrature volume coils and surface coils. In particular, the Facility has developed substantial experience and expertise in performing MR experiments using actively-decoupled surface (receive) / volume (transmit) coil pairs. This coil arrangement takes advantage of the high sensitivity of the surface coil and the excellent RF homogeneity of the volume coil.

The recently installed 9.4-T Bruker MRI system supports actively decoupled receiver coils with up to four channels.  Currently available multi-channel array coils on that system include a 4-channel mouse brain surface coil and a 4-channel mouse brain CryoProbe, which offers a 2-3x increase in SNR over our more traditional ‘room temperature’ 4-channel array coil.  Late in 2021, we will be expanding our capabilities with the addition of a 4-channel rat brain surface coil.

Animal Procedure Support
Wet Chemistry and Electronic Support
Computers, Data Storage, and Internet
Computational Software
Data Archival and Backup

Apply for MIR Pilot Studies Funding

Small-Animal MR Imaging Facility Scheduler