Professor Matthias Stuber, CIBM MRI CHUV-UNIL Section Head held a kick-start meeting with applicants who received Swiss National Science Foundation R’Equip funding for the project Low-Field MRI – The Next Frontier at Lausanne University Hospital (CHUV) on 26 November, 2021.
The goal of the meeting was to identify opportunities of low-field MRI to be leveraged for technically-oriented research and future grants. The program included presentations and group break-out sessions:
- Low field: Challenges, opportunities, planned projects and timeline (Matthias Stuber)
- Opportunities in MR Methods (Ruud van Heeswijk, Group 1)
- Opportunities Reconstruction (Jerome Yerly, Group 2)
- Opportunities Organs (Chris Roy, Group 3)
- The apparatus 0.55T Free Max (Davide Piccini, Siemens Healthineers)
Group 1: Ruud van Heeswijk, Simone Rumac, Augustin Ogier, Xavier Sieber, Hélène Lajous, Antoine Lutti
Group 2: Jérôme Yerly, Bastien Milani, Ludovica Romanin, Pauline Calarnou, Aurélien Bustin, Benedetta Franceschiello, Meritxell Bach Cuadra
Group 3: Chris Roy, Eleonora Fornari, Solange Denervaud, Coline Grasset, Alicia Rey, Sarah Boillat, David Romascano, Tobias Rutz
Professor Matthias Stuber led discussions on addressing the unmet needs of providing MRI on a larger scale worldwide. Low-field units may be the solution as they could be manufactured, installed and operated at much reduced cost. Low field units have been around for almost four decades and their installed base has not made progress which begs the question why the option for low-field MRI has not been pursued more decisively. Another unmet need would be easy-to-use and affordable technology without a requirement for specialist operators.
With the easy to use and affordable Free-Running Framework technology developed by CIBM MRI CHUV-UNIL, thanks to the Siemens team, preliminary data were obtained for the grant on the ultra low-field MRI scanners in Erlangen.
Matthias Stuber said, “Special thanks go to the SNF as well as to the leadership of the CIBM (Pina Marziliano), CHUV Radiology (Reto Meuli and Alban Denys), the General Director of the CHUV (Philippe Eckert), and the Dean of the Faculty of Biology and Medicine at UNIL (Jean-Daniel Tissot). Their precious support makes this exciting project possible.”
The estimated arrival of the Siemens MAGNETOM Free. Max 0.55T ultra low field MRI system, which will be hosted at the CHUV, is around spring 2023.
See the related news item: Two SNSF R’Equip Funding for new and upgraded MRI Infrastructure at CIBM