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Five Day Long Scan of Complete Brain Using Ultra Powerful MRI

Two years ago the FDA issued the first clearance for a high-field MRI scanner, the Siemens MAGNETOM Terra. Featuring a 7 Tesla magnet, the device generates a magnetic field more than twice the strength of the 3 Tesla scanners that were previously the most powerful for clinical use.

Now, a team of researchers, headed by a group at Massachusetts General Hospital, has used the machine to scan a donated brain for nearly five days. The result is an incredible visualization of a complete brain at a resolution of almost .1 millimeter.

The scan required the development of a special container that can hold the organ still while allowing air bubbles, that can screw up the image, to escape.

While the scanned brain came from a deceased person, and living persons can’t undergo such a scan for a number of reasons, the technology nevertheless provides a great deal of information about the brain’s anatomy that would otherwise be exceedingly difficult to obtain.

Here’s a video of one of the perspectives from the scan:

Flashback: FDA Gives First Clearance to Siemens High-Field 7 Tesla MRI Scanner

Study in journal bioRxiv: 7 Tesla MRI of the ex vivo human brain at 100 micron resolution

(Hat tip: ScienceNews)

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