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SRI International Receives NIH Grant To Develop Tomographic Imaging Technology

To improve three-dimensional imaging technology

SRI International has received two grants totaling $946,089 from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to develop a stationary X-ray system prototype using a new source tube design.

This new design is intended to improve three-dimensional imaging technology, which will make it easier to monitor tumor growth and assess the body’s response to chemotherapy treatment. As part of this project, SRI researchers will develop a real-time X-ray system that will be able to make X-ray motion pictures of medical procedures.

A key component of any X-ray imaging system is the source tube. The essential design features of X-ray source tubes have remained unchanged for the last several decades. SRI’s X-ray system will be based on a new type of source tube design that could allow for a less expensive and smaller X-ray system. In addition, this new design would allow for increased speed, improved image quality, and more flexible angular coverage.

SRI’s medical product development projects span many technologies, including biosensors, ultrasonic scanners, blood pressure instruments, blood and tissue sampling devices, insulin delivery systems, digital X-ray systems, magnetic resonance imaging, and surgical robots.

Paul Schwoebel, senior research engineer at SRI International, said: “The possibility for increased imaging speed and the implementation of geometries could lead to more affordable computed tomography (CT) scans and digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) systems used to take three-dimensional images for use in hospitals and clinics.

“These improved imaging capabilities will be an important benefit to medical research, including the study of breast cancer.”