May 7, 2009 - Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston have developed an imaging device utilizing magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology that provides extremely detailed, high-resolution images of the brain.
These images, depicting brain tissue down to the blood vessel level, will be useful for detecting brain disorders, including tumors.
The new technique can show small abnormalities that normal MRI would miss, thus permitting brain conditions to be diagnosed at an early stage. Because of its helmet-shaped design, the new device was named the Brain Bucket. It is a multichannel phased-ray coil that is connected to an MRI machine. The Brain Bucket uses 96 metal coils, as opposed to the 1 or 2 coils used in conventional MRI. In addition to providing clearer images than traditional MRI, the new technique is also 10 times faster. The developers described its capabilities as analogous to the difference between a cell phone camera and a 10-megapixel digital camera.
Bruce Rosen, M.D., director of the Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Center at Massachusetts General Hospital and a co-creator of the Brain Bucket, described the invention on the Good Morning America television program on May 4, 2009.
For more information: www.massgeneral.org