The unit, with a field intensity of 3 Tesla (SIEMENS Magnetom Skyra), is worth 2 million Euro and represents the state of the art in medical imaging technology. The scanner will be installed at the facilities of the Cognium at the University of Bremen and will go into operation mid-April 2011.
The acquisition of the scanner underlies the cooperation between Fraunhofer MEVIS in Bremen, the Fraunhofer-Institut für Techno- und Wirtschaftsmathematik (Fraunhofer ITWM) in Kaiserslautern, as well as neuroscientists from the University of Bremen. Whereas the development of new MR measurement methods and their adoption in clinical practice and research are of interest for Fraunhofer MEVIS, Fraunhofer ITWM primarily focuses on issues of characterization of materials. The scanner offers neuroscientists in Bremen the opportunity to examine human cognitive processes. The aforementioned working groups profit from the joint use of the scanner in the development and application of new procedures and methods.
The scanner is under the technical administration of Prof. Dr. Matthias Günther, member of the management board of Fraunhofer MEVIS and, since 2009, endowed professor of MR imaging physics at the University of Bremen. The neuroscientific and clinical fields are under the administration of Prof. Dr. Dr. Manfred Herrmann from the Department of Neuropsychology and Behavioral Neurobiology at the University of Bremen.
A central topic of the work at Fraunhofer MEVIS is the close integration of image processing and image analysis to advance computer assistance in image-based diagnosis and therapy. Prof. Dr. Günther explained “Having our own scanner gives us the opportunity to efficiently optimize MR imaging and post-processing on a high level.” Health professionals and patients are thereby promised modern MR imaging that can eliminate the need for contrast agents.