Performance Evaluation of a Preclinical SPECT Scanner with a Collimator Designed for Medium-Sized Animals

Yohji Matsusaka, Rudolf A. Werner, Paula Arias-Loza, Naoko Nose, Takanori Sasaki, Xinyu Chen, Constantin Lapa, Takahiro Higuchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background. Equipped with two stationary detectors, a large bore collimator for medium-sized animals has been recently introduced for dedicated preclinical single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging. We aimed to evaluate the basic performance of the system using phantoms and healthy rabbits. Methods. A general-purpose medium-sized animal (GP-MSA) collimator with 135 mm bore diameter and thirty-Three holes of 2.5 mm diameter was installed on an ultrahigh-resolution scanner equipped with two large stationary detectors (U-SPECT5-E/CT). The sensitivity and uniformity were investigated using a point source and a cylinder phantom containing 99mTc-pertechnetate, respectively. Uniformity (in %) was derived using volumes of interest (VOIs) on images of the cylinder phantom and calculated as maximum count-minimum count/maximum count+minimum count×100, with lower values of % indicating superior performance. The spatial resolution and contrast-To-noise ratios (CNRs) were evaluated with images of a hot-rod Derenzo phantom using different activity concentrations. Feasibility of in vivo SPECT imaging was finally confirmed by rabbit imaging with the most commonly used clinical myocardial perfusion SPECT agent [99mTc]Tc-sestamibi (dynamic acquisition with a scan time of 5 min). Results. In the performance evaluation, a sensitivity of 790 cps/MBq, a spatial resolution with the hot-rod phantom of 2.5 mm, and a uniformity of 39.2% were achieved. The CNRs of the rod size 2.5 mm were 1.37, 1.24, 1.20, and 0.85 for activity concentration of 29.2, 1.0, 0.5, and 0.1 MBq/mL, respectively. Dynamic SPECT imaging in rabbits allowed to visualize most of the thorax and to generate time-Activity curves of the left myocardial wall and ventricular cavity. Conclusion. Preclinical U-SPECT5-E/CT equipped with a large bore collimator demonstrated adequate sensitivity and resolution for in vivo rabbit imaging. Along with its unique features of SPECT molecular functional imaging is a superior collimator technology that is applicable to medium-sized animal models and thus may promote translational research for diagnostic purposes and development of novel therapeutics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9810097
JournalMolecular Imaging
Publication statusPublished - 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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