Neuronal fibre tracts at 7T

The Centre for Advanced Imaging houses a comprehensive range of instrumentation for human imaging including Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and ultrasound (see below for more about these techniques).

For more information about using the CAI human imaging facilities in your research download the CAI human imaging technical brochure or contact the Facility Manager.







About MRI

MRI uses magnetic fields and radio waves to generate images of internal organs by acting on protons in water molecules within soft tissue. Magnetised protons in soft tissue produce a signal when radio waves are applied which is then reconstructed by the instrument’s computer into images. It is an ideal tool for studying live subjects because it is non-invasive, safe and is able to generate data which cannot be obtained by other imaging methods.

MRI enables detailed information about the structure and function of the human body to be collected and allows visualisation of diseased and damaged tissue giving a clear idea of how the body functions when healthy and when unwell.

The Centre for Advanced Imaging houses 3T and 7T scanners that can be used to look at neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis, brain tumours and the damage caused by stroke, as well as cancer, diseases of the musculo-skeletal system and metabolic disorders, such as diabetes and obesity.

About Ultrasound

Ultrasound is a non-invasive, real time imaging modality that uses sound waves to interrogate various organs and structures within the body.

It is used extensively in clinical practice and research, due its many benefits such as    

  • Does not use ionising radiation  
  • Very fast and portable
  • Suitable for longitudinal studies
  • Capable of imaging in any desired plane or orientation. This is extremely advantageous when following long structures such as tendons, nerves and blood vessels, as well as the assessment of the mobile fetus
  • Superb detail of superficial structures where high frequency transducers can be employed. This makes ultrasound a mainstay in the assessment of musculoskeletal structures
  • Shows images in real time, so that movement can be assessed e.g. heart valve function, tendon excursion or muscle contraction
  • Doppler techniques can provide vascular information such as blood flow velocity and direction as well as organ perfusion