Molecular Imaging

Organizers: Klaas Nicolay, Ph.D., Patrick Winter, Ph.D.
Skill level: Basic

Sunday, 4 May 2008


The first part of this one-day course will focus on technological aspects of molecular imaging. The next session will discuss the design of MRI contrast agents, sensing and amplification approaches, and use of molecular and cellular MRI for image-guided therapy. Apart from the technological aspects, most of the lectures in the course will highlight recent applications of molecular imaging in biomedical research.

Educational Objectives

Upon completion of this course, participants should be able to:

  • Explain basic concepts and the potential of molecular imaging as a basic research tool, for diagnostics of disease processes and for monitoring therapeutic interventions, and explain the role of molecular versus structural and physiological readouts;
  • Recognize the relevance of multi-modality imaging strategies and be able to propose the optimal imaging strategy for a specific problem;
  • Explain ‘contrast’ principles of the various reporter moieties (paramagnetic and superparamagnetic as well as CEST-based MRI contrast agents, bioluminescence, fluorescent dyes and proteins, positron emitters, gamma ray emitters) and recognize the strengths and weaknesses of the different reporter concepts;
  • Evaluate molecular probe concepts (e.g. direct versus indirect reporter systems, basic research concept versus clinically applicable probes, etc.); and
  • Indicate the potentials of molecular and cellular imaging concepts for combining therapeutic interventions and diagnostics.

    Audience Description:

    This course is designed for physicists, (bio)chemists, (molecular) biologists, pharmacologists, and physicians with interest in imaging technologies, fusion of MRI with other modalities, design of molecular imaging probes, application for (early) diagnostics, staging, evaluation of therapy, and treatment responses. This is a basic education course, and no special experience is required, although some experience in/ exposure to imaging technologies, as well as basic knowledge of chemistry and biology is always helpful.

    8:00 Introduction Patrick M. Winter, Ph.D.
      Molecular Imaging Technologies  
    8:35 Optical Imaging Erik Kaijzel
    9:10 Nuclear Imaging Holger Gruell
    9:45 Magnetic Resonance Imaging Gustav J. Strijkers, Ph.D.
    10:20 Break  
    10:20 - 10:35 Meet the Teachers  
      Contrast Agent Design  
    10:40 Gd-chelates Michel Modo, Ph.D.
    11:15 CEST Agents A. Dean Sherry, Ph.D.
    11:50 FeO Particles Claire Corot, Ph.D.
    12:25 Break  
    12:25 - 12:40 Meet the Teachers  
      Sensing, Amplification and Activation Approaches  
    13:30 Sensing MRI Contrast Agents Alexei A. Bogdanov, Ph.D.
    14:05 Hyperpolarization Techniques Leif Schroeder, Ph.D.
    14:40 Activatable Optical Probes Brian C. Wilson, Ph.D.
    15:15 Break  
    15:15 - 15:30 Meet the Teachers  
      Image-Guided Therapy  
    15:45 Gene Therapy Chrit T. Moonen, Ph.D.
    16:20 RNA Silencing Anna V. Moore, Ph.D.
    16:55 Cell Tracking and Therapy Paula J. Foster, Ph.D.
    17:30 Adjournment  
    17:30 - 17:45 Meet the Teachers