Special Issue "SPECT and PET Imaging of Small Animals"

A special issue of Journal of Imaging (ISSN 2313-433X). This special issue belongs to the section "Medical Imaging".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 March 2022.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. George Kastis
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Research Center of Mathematics, Academy of Athens, GR-11527 Athens, Greece
Interests: PET and SPECT imaging; small-animal imaging; multimodality imaging; molecular imaging; image reconstruction
Dr. Anastasios Gaitanis
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
PET/CT Department and Small Animal PET/CT Unit, Centre for Clinical Research, Experimental Surgery & Translational Research, Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens (BRFAA), GR-11527 Athens, Greece
Interests: iterative reconstruction algorithms in PET; medical image processing; radiomics; clinical and preclinical PET/CT
Dr. Nicholas E. Protonotarios
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Research Center of Mathematics, Academy of Athens, GR-11527 Athens, Greece
Interests: mathematical methods in medical image reconstruction; analytic reconstruction methods for PET and SPECT; emission tomography

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Over the past two decades, there has been a great demand for dedicated small-animal imaging systems for biomedical research applications. Several commercial and research small-animal imaging systems have recently emerged, including PET, PET/CT, and PET/MR, as well as SPECT and SPECT/CT scanners. These small-animal imaging modalities are powerful tools providing crucial biological and physiological information to researchers. Non-invasive in vivo imaging of small animals has become an important tool in biomedical research.

There are many preclinical applications of small-animal PET and SPECT systems, for example, in the areas of cardiology, neurology, and oncology. Small-animal imaging focuses on the study of various diseases like cancer, with a tremendous impact on applications such as drug development. Furthermore, small-animal imaging systems facilitate the monitoring of pharmacological and therapeutic intervention for these diseases. In recent years, there has been an increased demand for improved drug development and for in vivo monitoring of internal organs’ morphological and functional characteristics. In this direction, there are several aspects of medicine that can be thoroughly explored by microPET and microSPECT systems, including diagnosis and novel therapeutic interventions. Therefore, therapeutics, clinical trials, and translational research can greatly benefit from small-animal imaging. The future of small-animal imaging lies in the upgrade of relevant hardware and software, in the development of novel applications, and in the improvement of camera sensitivity, spatial resolution, and sophisticated image reconstruction.

The aim of this Special Issue is to present novel and diverse research articles that demonstrate new instrumentation developments, imaging protocols, reconstruction algorithms, and imaging applications in small-animal PET and SPECT imaging. This is not limited to special application areas.

Dr. George Kastis
Dr. Anastasios Gaitanis
Dr. Nicholas E. Protonotarios
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Journal of Imaging is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Small-animal imaging (i.e., PET- and SPECT-based scanners, instrumentation)
  • Small-animal imaging applications (i.e., drug discovery, quantification)
  • Radionuclide imaging
  • Imaging protocols
  • Image reconstruction
  • Image processing
  • Radiomics

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Article
Optical to Planar X-ray Mouse Image Mapping in Preclinical Nuclear Medicine Using Conditional Adversarial Networks
J. Imaging 2021, 7(12), 262; https://doi.org/10.3390/jimaging7120262 - 03 Dec 2021
Viewed by 494
Abstract
In the current work, a pix2pix conditional generative adversarial network has been evaluated as a potential solution for generating adequately accurate synthesized morphological X-ray images by translating standard photographic images of mice. Such an approach will benefit 2D functional molecular imaging techniques, such [...] Read more.
In the current work, a pix2pix conditional generative adversarial network has been evaluated as a potential solution for generating adequately accurate synthesized morphological X-ray images by translating standard photographic images of mice. Such an approach will benefit 2D functional molecular imaging techniques, such as planar radioisotope and/or fluorescence/bioluminescence imaging, by providing high-resolution information for anatomical mapping, but not for diagnosis, using conventional photographic sensors. Planar functional imaging offers an efficient alternative to biodistribution ex vivo studies and/or 3D high-end molecular imaging systems since it can be effectively used to track new tracers and study the accumulation from zero point in time post-injection. The superimposition of functional information with an artificially produced X-ray image may enhance overall image information in such systems without added complexity and cost. The network has been trained in 700 input (photography)/ground truth (X-ray) paired mouse images and evaluated using a test dataset composed of 80 photographic images and 80 ground truth X-ray images. Performance metrics such as peak signal-to-noise ratio (PSNR), structural similarity index measure (SSIM) and Fréchet inception distance (FID) were used to quantitatively evaluate the proposed approach in the acquired dataset. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SPECT and PET Imaging of Small Animals)
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Brief Report
[18F]Fluorothymidine Uptake in the Porcine Pancreatic Elastase-Induced Model of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
J. Imaging 2021, 7(8), 130; https://doi.org/10.3390/jimaging7080130 - 04 Aug 2021
Viewed by 654
Abstract
The porcine pancreatic elastase (PPE) model is a common preclinical model of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA). Some notable characteristics of this model include the low aortic rupture rate, non-progressive disease course, and infra-renal AAA formation. Enhanced [18F]fluorothymidine ([18F]FLT) uptake [...] Read more.
The porcine pancreatic elastase (PPE) model is a common preclinical model of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA). Some notable characteristics of this model include the low aortic rupture rate, non-progressive disease course, and infra-renal AAA formation. Enhanced [18F]fluorothymidine ([18F]FLT) uptake on positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) has previously been reported in the angiotensin II-induced murine model of AAA. Here, we report our preliminary findings of investigating [18F]FLT uptake in the PPE murine model of AAA. [18F]FLT uptake was found to be substantially increased in the abdominal areas recovering from the surgery, whilst it was not found to be significantly increased within the PPE-induced AAA, as confirmed using in vivo PET/CT and ex vivo whole-organ gamma counting (PPE, n = 7; controls, n = 3). This finding suggests that the [18F]FLT may not be an appropriate radiotracer for this specific AAA model, and further studies with larger sample sizes are warranted to elucidate the pathobiology contributing to the reduced uptake of [18F]FLT in this model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SPECT and PET Imaging of Small Animals)
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Brief Report
Validation of Image Qualities of a Novel Four-Mice Bed PET System as an Oncological and Neurological Analysis Tool
J. Imaging 2021, 7(3), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/jimaging7030043 - 26 Feb 2021
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Abstract
Background: Micro-positron emission tomography (micro-PET), a small-animal dedicated PET system, is used in biomedical studies and has the quantitative imaging capabilities of radiotracers. A single-bed system, commonly used in micro-PET, is laborious to use in large-scale studies. Here, we evaluated the image [...] Read more.
Background: Micro-positron emission tomography (micro-PET), a small-animal dedicated PET system, is used in biomedical studies and has the quantitative imaging capabilities of radiotracers. A single-bed system, commonly used in micro-PET, is laborious to use in large-scale studies. Here, we evaluated the image qualities of a multi-bed system. Methods: Phantom imaging studies were performed to assess the recovery coefficients (RCs), uniformity, and spill-over ratios (SORs) in water- and air-filled chambers. 18F-FDG and 18F-FPEB PET images of xenograft and normal mice from the multi-bed and single-bed systems were compared. Results: For small diameters (< 3 mm), the RC values between the two systems differed significantly. However, for large diameters (> 4 mm), there were no differences in RC values between the two systems. Uniformity and SORs of both systems were within the tolerance limit of 15%. In the oncological study, the estimation of 18F-FDG uptake in the tumor was significantly lower in the multi-bed system than that in the single-bed system. However, 18F-FDG PET in xenograft mice with tumor size > 4 mm revealed the variation between subjects within the multi-bed system group to be less than 12%. In the neurological study, SUV for the multi-bed group was 25–26% lower than that for the single-bed group; however, inter-object variations within the multi-bed system were below 7%. Conclusions: Although the multi-bed system showed lower estimation of radiotracer uptake than that of the single-bed system, the inter-subject variations were within acceptable limits. Our results indicate that the multi-bed system can be used in oncological and neurological studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SPECT and PET Imaging of Small Animals)
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