Multimodal Whole Animal Imaging Core

The Multimodal Whole Animal Imaging Core will operate a unique animal imaging facility under BSL-4 containment in which the synergies of multiple imaging modalities will be available for discoveries about infectious diseases studied at the NEIDL.

Elucidation of in vivo kinetics of organism pathogenesis, treatment response, and immune protection studies of agents, such as tuberculosis and the hemorrhagic fever viruses in whole animals, have been severely hampered by the lack of advanced whole animal imaging systems capable of routine operations in a BSL-4. This is particularly true for the assessment of pathogen-induced cellular and structural changes in larger animals, in which cross-sectional postmortem studies had to substitute for the more desirable longitudinal in vivo studies.

The primary objective of the Multimodal Whole Animal Imaging Core is to utilize newly available imaging modalities to study the pathogenesis, treatment, and prevention of emerging infectious diseases. Researches have access to recent and anticipated innovations in multimodal imaging technologies. A custom-designed, one-of-a-kind, BSL-4-compatible 4.7 Tesla whole animal MRI scanner, fluorescence optical tomography, and x-ray-computed tomography are some of the imaging techniques that are located in the NEIDL. In-house-developed multimodal imaging software packages designed specifically for the needs of researchers of emerging infectious diseases will facilitate further quantitative and multimodal analyses of data to gain insights into the pathogenesis and treatment of major infectious diseases that are public health concerns.