Brain Imaging

Our Brain Imaging program aims to make a difference in the field of neuroimaging, as well as provide services to other medical disciplines, through the optimization of infrastructure, analyses, techniques and technologies. We do so by focusing on fully integrating research and teaching facilities; creating an interactive cross-departmental platform of Principal Investigators; sharing resources, funds, imaging databanks and computing facilities; and cross-fertilizing graduate training.

Rationale and common goals

Brain imaging aims to provide an excellent research infrastructure by optimizing the available scanners and analysis platforms, that are both demand-driven and top-down, also for shared presentation to industry. This includes a full integration of research and teaching facilities, by construction of a cross-departmental interactive platform of Principal Investigators, cross-fertilization at the level of graduate training, shared fund-raising and resource utilization, and setting up a common imaging databanks and computing facilities.

Assets: high end infrastructure

The brain-imaging program has an extensive infrastructure including all available imaging modalities for magnetic resonance imaging (including 7T MRI as part of the Spinoza Center in Amsterdam), nuclear imaging techniques (including PET/MRI at VUmc campus), and magneto-electro-encephalography (MEG at the VUmc campus). This high end infrastructure comes with advanced expertise to support data acquisition, data management,  development of advanced data and statistical analysis tools, and ultimately the incorporation of these advanced technologies into translation (e.g., through Institute Quantivision, and EATRIS). We provide services to other fields of medicine too, but the brain remains the main focus, at least for modalities such as MEG and high-field MRI.

Profiling

Improved profiling in human brain studies is provided by [a] fully translational brain imaging capacities (enhance weak points like micro PET/SPECT/MRI) from bench to bedside; [b] multi-modal imaging capacities (improve new technologies: high-field MRI, PET-MRI, OCT, in addition to experimental modulations such as DBS, rTMS, ECT, MRS, TDCS, realtime fMRI/EEG and improve close integration with physics and mathematics for receptor mapping, pharmaco-fMRI and network analysis); [c] minimally invasive programs suitable for ‘personalized medicine’ and drug-targeting strategies (focus on network analysis, defining new physiological parameters such as pharmaco-fMRI and other inventive receptor imaging strategies, neurofeedback, real time fMRI/EEG).

Making the difference

Brain imaging wishes to leverage the fully translational brain-imaging program, which focuses on multi-modal imaging and minimally invasive brain imaging techniques suitable for drug targeting strategies and individualization of treatment strategies. This is the available expertise of participating PIs and how we can make a difference compared to other large, more technology driven brain imaging facilities worldwide.

Program leaders

Taskforce team

Program members