"Human elements drive innovation. We tend to think of innovation in terms of technology, science and laboratories but innovation is essentially the application of human ingenuity to improve humankind."
Zahi A. Fayad, PhD
Director of the Translational and Molecular Imaging Institute and Professor of Radiology and Medicine (Cardiology)
A first step for a good therapeutics is a good diagnostics. Biomedical imaging now influences every step of research and clinical care. For example:
- Brain imaging now allows us to look inside the brain without cutting it open. Human brain atlases that use brain mapping from thousands of people are being created to help us better understand the relationship between brain anatomy and function.
- Cardiovascular disease is now diagnosed using coronary CT in the emergency room and has been proven to be an effective and rapid way to select the most appropriate intervention for acute coronary patients.
- Cancer detection with imaging has been shown to improve survival rates for lung and breast cancer.
- Nanomedicine with its precision diagnostics and targeted drug delivery capabilities has the potential to address one of the biggest problems in disease therapy: how to get enough drug of the right drug to the right place without causing side effects or inducing resistance. The result is the creation of therapies that were previously thought impossible, such as drugs that change their properties depending on where they are in the body, or that target proteins once deemed "undruggable."
It is clear that innovative biomedical research requires frequent access to the newest and most advanced technologies.
Among our most powerful equipment:
- A 7 Tesla ultra-high field MRI, the next generation of human MRI that offers special resolution. This 39 tones MR scanner allows us to detect early brain disease or cancerous tumors and assess them noninvasively at never-before-seen resolution and magnification, among other applications. It is almost twice as strong as the standard MRI (i.e., 3T) most commonly used.
- A combination PET/MRI, which will be used for heart, brain, and cancer imaging. This technology is a completely noninvasive, wholebody, dual system that allows us to see, for example, hidden plaque buildup within the arterial wall. It also enables investigators to develop novel methods for targeted imaging and drug delivery to improve the diagnosis and treatment of a range of diseases.
- A spectral CT, using the latest detectors to identify and characterize disease in "color" at much better sensitivity with the lowest possible radiation exposure. This will enable, in an unprecedented fashion, disease detection at an early stage and in a more accurate way.
Our high performance systems are critical to our primary goal of TMII which is to accelerate progress in translational "bench-to-bedside" research at Mount Sinai by providing and assisting the research community’s access to and use of a comprehensive, state-of-the-art, and dynamic imaging infrastructure—which is also its unique strength. Its comprehensive and integrated research structure focuses on the use of multimodality imaging for brain, cancer, and cardiovascular research, along with research in nanomedicine for precision imaging and drug delivery.
I invite you to learn more about TMII by exploring our website and by contacting me. I look forward to many collaborative opportunities and to the advancement of humankind thru the discovery process provided by TMII and its wonderful faculty and staff.
Zahi A Fayad, PhD