European Radiology

, Volume 13, Issue 12, pp 2583–2586

Hyperpolarized 3-helium MR imaging of the lungs: testing the concept of a central production facility

  • E. J. R. van Beek
  • J. Schmiedeskamp
  • J. M. Wild
  • M. N. J. Paley
  • F. Filbir
  • S. Fichele
  • F. Knitz
  • G. H. Mills
  • N. Woodhouse
  • A. Swift
  • W. Heil
  • M. Wolf
  • E. Otten
Chest

Abstract.

The aim of this study was to test the feasibility of a central production facility with distribution network for implementation of hyperpolarized 3-helium MRI. The 3-helium was hyperpolarized to 50–65% using a large-scale production facility based at a university in Germany. Using a specially designed transport box, containing a permanent low-field shielded magnet and dedicated iron-free glass cells, the hyperpolarized 3-helium gas was transported via airfreight to a university in the UK. At this location, the gas was used to perform in vivo MR experiments in normal volunteers and patients with chronic obstructive lung diseases. Following initial tests, the transport (road–air–road cargo) was successfully arranged on six occasions (approximately once per month). The duration of transport to imaging averaged 18 h (range 16–20 h), which was due mainly to organizational issues such as working times and flight connections. During the course of the project, polarization at imaging increased from 20% to more than 30%. A total of 4 healthy volunteers and 8 patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were imaged. The feasibility of a central production facility for hyperpolarized 3-helium was demonstrated. This should enable a wider distribution of gas for this novel technology without the need for local start-up costs.

Keywords

MR imaging Ventilation studies Hyperpolarized 3-helium Chronic obstructive lung disease 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. J. R. van Beek
    • 1
    • 5
  • J. Schmiedeskamp
    • 2
  • J. M. Wild
    • 1
  • M. N. J. Paley
    • 1
  • F. Filbir
    • 2
  • S. Fichele
    • 1
  • F. Knitz
    • 3
  • G. H. Mills
    • 4
  • N. Woodhouse
    • 1
  • A. Swift
    • 1
  • W. Heil
    • 2
  • M. Wolf
    • 2
  • E. Otten
    • 2
  1. 1.Unit of Academic RadiologyUniversity of SheffieldSheffieldUK
  2. 2.Institut für PhysikUniversity of MainzMainzGermany
  3. 3.Department of AnaesthesiologyUniversity of MainzMainzGermany
  4. 4.Department of AnaesthesiologyUniversity of SheffieldSheffieldUK
  5. 5.Unit of Academic Radiology, Floor CRoyal Hallamshire HospitalSheffieldUK

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