How to Choose the Right Imaging Modality

  • Fabian Kiessling
  • Bernd J. Pichler
  • Peter Hauff


In the recent years the number of publications including small animal imaging increased. Nevertheless, most publications only report on proof of principle studies and there is still uncertainty how small animal imaging can support preclinical research most effectively. It is also discussed controversially, which imaging modality should be used for a certain demand. Thus, it is the aim of this book chapter to support the reader in choosing the optimal imaging modality for his research. First, the demands on imaging are defined, hereby distinguishing between imaging of morphology, vascular function, metabolism and molecular markers. In this regard it is also considered if imaging of single or multiple lesions respectively phenotyping of animals are intended and if the lesion lays superficially or in the abdomen or the chest. Next, the time effort required to scan an animal is discussed, which can be a significant obstacle in complex research projects that require a high number of study groups and animals. The last part focuses on the use of targeted molecular imaging. Here, different imaging modalities may be chosen if it is intended to evaluate binding affinity of a new ligand, to assess the biodistribution of a molecule or to indirectly monitor therapy response. A single imaging modality will not be able to fulfill all these requirements and as a consequence a small animal imaging center should host different imaging devices that can be used complementary. Even more, for many purposes image fusion or dual modality scanners may be required.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fabian Kiessling
    • 1
  • Bernd J. Pichler
    • 2
  • Peter Hauff
    • 3
  1. 1.University of Aachen (RWTH)AachenGermany
  2. 2.Department of Radiology, Laboratory for Preclinical Imaging and Imaging Technology of the Werner Siemens-FoundationUniversity of TuebingenTuebingenGermany
  3. 3.Global Drug Discovery, Bayer Schering Pharma AGBerlinGermany

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