The Herston Imaging Research Facility (HIRF) is dedicated to clinical research. It provides scientists, clinicians and patients with unprecedented access to three state-of-the-art imaging scanners that provide clinicians and researchers with more extensive information than traditional machines. The scanners combine anatomical, molecular and functional processes to help improve researchers' understanding of conditions such as cancer, dementia and mental illness. The simultaneous imaging provided by the scanners also helps clinicians to quickly determine the effectiveness of treatments.
Imaging Research Services
HIRF typically has variety of imaging research projects covering our modalities of MR, PET/MR, PET/CT and diagnostic CT. Our fleet of current state of the art Siemens imaging equipment is supported by on site Siemens scientists and our collaborative agreements provide access to the latest WIP and C2P MR sequences. The high gradient strength and field homogeneity make the PRISMA 3T MR the preferred tool for brain and other demanding MR imaging projects. There is a range of ancillary equipment installed on the PRISMA, allowing for delivery of cognitive task for functional MRI. This includes an LCD BOLDScreen so participants can watch stimulus or movies, noise-cancelling headphones, eyetracking and MR-compatible response devices and biological measurement systems such as EEG. The PET/MR allows simultaneous acquisition of both PET and MR, leveraging the advantages of both technologies whilst providing absolute image co-registration. The PET/CT allows high throughput PET imaging but also provides capability for dynamic studies for kinetic analysis of tracers, with respiratory and cardiac gating.
PET imaging is supported by a GMP certified radiopharmacy laboratory on campus which provides a variety of routine, boutique and research tracers. This facility houses a GE cyclotron and a variety of synthesis modules. Current tracers include but are not limited to:
- 18F-FDG (Glucose metabolism)
- 18F-DOPA (Congenital hyperinsulinaemia, glioma, insulinoma, Parkinson’s disease)
- 18F-PSMA1007 (Prostate cancer)
- 68GaDOTA TATE (Neuroendocrine tumours)
- 124I-NaI (thyroid cancer)
- 68GaPSMA HBED-CC (Prostate cancer)
- 68GaPentixafor (Overexpression of CXCR4 receptors)
- 18F-GE216* (Tau deposits)
- 18F-GE180* (Neuroinflammation)
- 18F-FEOBV (Cholinergic system)
We also work closely with our collaborators in Brisbane at various institutes such as the University of Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Queensland Institute of Medical Research (QIMR-Berghofer) and CSIRO to be able to package services such as antibody discovery and tracer development, pre-clinical imaging, and early phase studies as well as post imaging support such as advanced image processing and analysis.