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PET Imaging Examples
Example 1. Cardiac ischaemia.
Due to the high metabolic rate of cadiomyocytes, the heart is an excellent target for PET studies using 18F-FDG. In this example a clear zone with no 18F-FDG activity is seen in the heart following a period of ischaemia, indicating an area of  the myocardium is not being perfused by blood.

 

  
                       End diastole                                   End systole

Figure 1. PET imaging of rat heart during an ischaemic insult. Acquisition time: 20 minutes. Tracer: 18F-FDG. Images acquired under a CIHR Emerging Team Grant in the Regenerative Medicine and Nanomedicine Initiative (P.I. Ganghong Tian, NRC-IBD).

 

 Example 2. Cerebral ischaemia
As with the myocardium, the brain is an excellent candidate for PET imaging using 18F-FDG.  Figure 2 shows the distribution of 18F-FDG in  a geriatric rat, with a clearly discernible region of low 18F-FDG uptake indicative of a perfusion defect.

 

 
                 Transverse plane                                 Coronal plane
Figure 2. PET images of geriatric rat brain during. Acquisition time: 20 minutes: Tracer 18F-FDG. Images acquired under a CIHR Emerging Team Grant in the Regenerative Medicine and Nanomedicine Initiative (P.I. Ganghong Tian, NRC-IBD).                           

 

Example 3. Biodistribution of stem cells
PET imaging can also be used to study the biodistribution of cells introduced into an animal. Figure 3 shows PET images acquired over a 3 hour time period following tail vein injection of adipose derived stem cells previously incubated with 18F-FDG.

Figure 3. Biodistribution of labelled stem cells, as a function of time. Acquisition time: 3 hour dynamic study: Tracer: 18F-FDG labelled adipose tissue stem cells. Images acquired under a CIHR Emerging Team Grant in the Regenerative Medicine and Nanomedicine Initiative (P.I. Ganghong Tian, NRC-IBD).