Project I: Detectors and Systems
Our motivation is to advance the state of the art in spatial and temporal resolutions in preclinical and, via collaborative and spin-off translational projects, clinical systems. Our strategy has been to advance gamma-ray detection technology while preserving the full information content of all recorded signals by designing our own list-mode acquisition systems and recovering gamma-ray attributes with optimal statistical estimation techniques, i.e. implementing the acquisition side of photon processing.
Project II: Polyscopic imaging of dynamic physiological processes
Many diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and metabolic disorders involve multiple molecular pathways that are activated and maintained through a complex interplay of physiologic processes inside cells and within the tissue microenvironment. TR&D Project II is aimed at combining the technology of window chamber models and polyscopic imaging technology to obtain fundamental information at the molecular, cellular, and system level to answer critical questions about specific disease processes or therapeutic interventions. It also builds on work in image science that seeks to develop the analytic framework to optimally extract information from multiple polyscopic views of underlying physiological processes.
Project III: Algorithms and Image-Quality Metrics in Photon Processing CT
Modern CT imaging systems are beginning to utilize photon counting and spectral information but generally with relatively few energy bins, and counting is only performed on a per-pixel basis. We have pioneered the concept of photon-processing imaging where as much information as possible about each individual photon is estimated and used to reconstruct images and maximize task performance. By transitioning from photon counting to photon processing, we will substantially improve upon the information gathered by the detector about each photon interaction. This extra information will result in lower dose in CT, better visual representations of the image data through new image-reconstruction techniques, and overall improved task performance.
Project IV: Thermoacoustic and Acoustoelectric Mapping
In recent years, a variety of hybrid techniques have emerged that combine sound with other types of energy that offer new sources of contrast for biomedical imaging. Thermoacoustic imaging (TAI), for example, employs a short optical or microwave pulse to generate US waves, which are detected to form images with contrast proportional to the absorbed energy source whereas Acoustoelectric imaging (AEI) uses an ultrasound pulse to generate electrical signals to produce maps of current densities. In TR&D IV, we develop cutting-edge tools and techniques for hybrid imaging with US with a focus on TAI and AEI.
CAPP runs an active collaborative program to bring our technologies to biomedical collaborators across the nation. Our goals are to: Provide advanced technologies being developed at the center to outstanding scientists; Work closely with these and other collaborators to understand the technological limits of their abilities to answer their biological or clinical questions; Refine CAPP technologies in gamma-ray, x-ray, optical, and acoustic imaging to help our collaborators get past these hurdles; Develop entirely new approaches of imaging and image analysis with photon-processing detectors and concepts.
In addition to these project categories, CAPP also provides research services to groups whose interests are in line with CAPPs. These services include small-animal imaging on a small cohort of animals to generate data for proposal, rapid prototyping printing in both plastics and heavy metals, system designs that have been successful at CAPP, and software service for our software packages available on this site.