Nobel Prize awarded for MRI
The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institute has awarded The Nobel
Prize in Physiology or Medicine for 2003 to Paul C. Lauterbur, PhD
and Sir Peter Mansfield, PhD for their discoveries leading to the
development and clinical application of magnetic resonance imaging
In announcing the award, the Institute noted, "This year's Nobel
Laureates in Physiology or Medicine have made seminal discoveries
concerning the use of magnetic resonance to visualize different
structures. These discoveries have led to the development of modern
MRI, which represents a breakthrough in medical diagnostics and
Dr. Lauterbur, professor and director of the Biomedical Magnetic
Resonance Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana, is
credited with discovering "the ability to create a 2D picture by
introducing gradients in the magnetic field. By analysis of the
characteristics of the emitted radio waves, he could determine
their origin. This made it possible to build up 2D pictures of
structures that could not be visualized with other methods."
Sir Peter Mansfield of the Magnetic Resonance Centre at the
University of Nottingham, England, is credited with further
developing "the utilization of gradients in the magnetic field. He
showed how the signals could be mathematically analyzed, which made
it possible to develop a useful imaging technique. Mansfield also
showed how extremely fast imaging could be achievable. This became
technically possible within medicine a decade later."
"Paul Lauterbur's work is perhaps the most significant medical
diagnostic discovery of the 20th century," said Nancy Cantor, the
chancellor of the University of Illinois' Urbana campus. "Every
patient who undergoes a noninvasive medical imaging procedure
should thank Paul. His work has led to revolutionary insights into
the functions of the brain and the workings of the human body."
"MRI has had a revolutionary impact on medicine throughout the
world," said Sir Colin Campbell, vice-chancellor at the University
of Nottingham. "This award is testament to Sir Peter's pioneering
In 1987, Dr. Lauterbur was awarded the Radiological Society of
North America (RSNA) Gold Medal for his pioneering work in the
field of MRI.
The upcoming 89
Scientific Assembly and Annual Meeting of the RSNA (RSNA 2003) once
again promises to be a showcase for the latest innovations in
To be held November 30 through December 5 in Chicago, IL, the
scientific program will feature 2161 leading-edge presentations.
"What the scientific program highlights is cutting-edge research
and the state-of-the-art in radiology. It also shows what the
immediate future will look like," said scientific program committee
chairman George S. Bisset, III, MD, vice-chair of the department of
radiology at Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC.
Many of the presentations will focus on a number of emerging
trends, including multidetector computed tomography (CT)
applications, virtual gastroscopy, 3D volumetric measurement,
multimodality imaging, emergency radiology, and 3-Tesla MRI. In
addition, noted Bisset, "There are a lot more functional imaging
studies than we saw last year, particularly in neuroradiology with
diffusion imaging and perfusion imaging."
The technology that makes these advanced procedures possible
will also be on display from >630 companies throughout the
nearly 440,000 square feet of exhibit space. Of these, 88 companies
will exhibit at RSNA for the first time this year.
SonoSite (Booth 3944) will unveil its new mobile ultrasound (US)
system, Titan, at this year's meeting. The unit, which can be
handheld or docked into a cart, is based on the company's ASIC
(Application Specific Integrated Circuit) chip technology, with
three such chips housed on a single circuit. The result is a
compact unit that boots up in <14 seconds.
The system includes color power Doppler, pulse wave Doppler,
tissue harmonic imaging, M-mode, SiteLink, on-board DICOM, and a
large LCD screen. The system allows the user to have three
transducers always attached and the ability to switch between
transducers in <6 seconds.
With the Titan Mobile Docking system, the unit can be docked to
a cart, which provides on-board storage and connectivity to
internal information systems, including PACS. The product is
designed to allow radiologists to provide diagnostic-quality mobile
US throughout the hospital. Titan can be used for a variety of US
applications including musculoskeletal, vascular, abdominal,
general thoracic, obstetric, gynecologic, pediatric, and neonatal
head and abdomen imaging.
Siemens Medical Solutions
Siemens Medical Solutions (Booth 1929) will introduce Speed4D CT
technology. The company calls this a "paradigm shift in CT tube
technology, dose, and workflow management to enable advanced
utilization of cutting-edge multislice CT technology and
integration of sophisticated imaging applications." No further
information was available at press time.
Siemens will also feature its first digital ceiling-mounted
universal angiography C-arm system equipped with flat-panel
detector technology, the Axiom Artis dTA. This system was designed
to provide 3D image quality and network connectivity for vascular
and nonvascular diagnostic and interventional procedures.
Siemens will also feature:
* The Acuson Sequoia's Matched Response Technology using the
company's proprietary Native Patient Specific Imaging to detect,
measure, and adapt, in real time, to a patient's individual
* New transducer and acoustic technologies for the Sonoline
Antares US system;
* The new c.cam dedicated cardiology gamma camera, which
includes a reclining chair to increase patient comfort and reduce
* The Mammomat Novation (DR) digital mammography system, which,
when used in combination with Opdima, becomes an all-in-one unit to
support an entire digital mammography work-up, and
*The Siremobil Iso-C(3D) mobile C-arm with intraoperative 3D
imaging capabilities and the open interface NaviLink, which is
compatible with nearly all navigation systems offering direct 3D
navigation in the operating room.
Orex (Booth 4450) will showcase several new features of its
compact computed radiography (CR) system (Figure 1), particularly
its increased processing speed and decreased footprint.
New enhancements include an increased throughput of up to 75
cassettes an hour with a single scanner and up to 150 plates per
hour on a dual scanner. With regular and low-dose speeds of 100,
200, and 400, the system's resolution modes range from 5.8 to 20
pixels/mm. The standard acquisition matrix is 2000 * 2500 pixels,
and an option for 4000 * 5000 pixels is available. The new system,
which weighs 44 lbs., has a 50% smaller footprint than the previous
model. An optional programmable key offers customized system
configuration for specific applications.
The company will also display existing products for specific
applications, including a radiotherapy cassette that captures
high-quality mega-voltage portal images for treatment verification,
as well as kilo-voltage images for treatment simulation. The
company's range of scanner products, including the new PcCR 1417
ACLxy, which scans up to 75 plates per hour, and the dual-reader
RAIS 2 ACLxy (Redundant Array Integrated System), which scans 150
plates per hour, will also be featured.
Philips Medical Systems
Philips Medical Systems (Booth 7132) will exhibit a full range
of imaging modalities.
For X-ray, the company will feature the Eleva line of X-ray
systems: the MultiDiagnost Eleva, which provides
multifunctionality; the EasyDiagnost Eleva conventional RF system;
and the OmniDiagnost Eleva multifunctional, remote-controlled X-ray
The company will also feature its complete line of CT products,
including 2-, 6-, 10-, and 16-slice scanners, with an emphasis on
innovations in detector design, signal conversion, data transfer,
reconstruction, and tube technology.
The Philips EnVisor Ultrasound system offers several new
features, including the QuickSCAN intelligent features, three new
transducers, online obstetric, trending, and an expanded
international language library.
In the field of information technology, Philips will highlight
the latest version of its ViewForum technology. The system provides
users with automated and protocoled tools to view complex CT and MR
image series at a speed suitable for clinical routine. ViewForum is
available on modality workstations and consoles and is also
integrated into the Philips PACS workstations.
Philips Nuclear Medicine/PET will showcase the latest version of
SKYLight, a gantry-free gamma camera now with concurrent imaging,
as well as the new MOSAIC, an advanced "small bore" animal
positron-emission tomography (PET) system. The company's
open-layout, combined PET and CT system, Gemini, and Syntegra
multimodality software, will also be shown.
Kodak Health Imaging
Kodak Health Imaging (Booth 2729) will be highlighting three new
Professional Services offerings. The company's Storage and Archive
Services (SAS) provide an ASP offsite storage service, data
migration, and disaster recovery capabilities. The Kodak Healthcare
Integration Services link a Kodak PACS and radiology information
system (RIS) with existing enterprise-wide RAID storage devices, as
well as hospital information systems (HIS)/RIS systems, and also
provides modality integration between RIS and PACS. Kodak Secure
E-mail Service encrypts e-mail messages and their attachments.
The company will also present the latest version of the
DirectView PACS System 5 (Figure 2), which includes integrated 3D
utilities, enterprise-wide reporting enhancements, and a teaching
file utility. RSNA 2003 will also be the American launch site for
the company's Radiology Information System 2010 (RIS 2010). The RIS
2010 integrated platform addresses all aspects of image and
Kodak will also preview, as a work-in-progress, a computer-aided
detection (CAD) system for mammography based on technology acquired
from MiraMedica, Inc.
E-Z-EM (Booth 4519) will introduce two new products at RSNA
2003: the EMPOWERCTA Injector System and VoLumen, an oral contrast
The EMPOWERCTA Injector System is a double-barrel CT injector
designed for advanced CT procedures that require the use of a
saline chase. Based on the EMPOWERCT design and technology, the new
injector offers all of the features of the original system,
including patented extravasation detection, tilt sensor lock-out,
arming at the injector, flexibility, and expandability, as well as
the double-barrel design.
VoLumen, the company's new oral contrast agent for multidetector
CT studies of the abdomen and pelvis, allows the radiologist to
control the transit of the agent through the gastrointestinal
tract. This allows the user to predict its location and achieve
better bowel lumen distention. According to E-Z-EM, this allows the
radiologist to "perform a single study of the abdominal and pelvic
regions to investigate all organs, vasculature, and surrounding
CADx (Booth 6749) will highlight several works-in-progress at
RSNA 2003. One is a CAD system that works with analog and digital
mammography systems simultaneously. The Second Look AD is designed
to meet the needs of facilities with both film-based and digital
mammography. This system will offer the same functionality as the
original film-based Second Look and adds digital capabilities to
work with new full-field digital mammography (FFDM) systems. Films
digitized using this system can be exported in DICOM format and
stored in the same manner as FFDM images without the need to touch
the films again. Currently installed Second Look analog systems
will be field upgradable to Second Look AD.
Another future offering that will be previewed this year is
Second Look CT Colon. This system will utilize 2D slices and 3D
volume renderings to mark objects within the colon. The markers
will then be displayed on the reconstructed colon landscape view.
The system will provide custom measurements and characterizations
of the objects found, and provide a comparison of the object to a
library of similar objects. In addition, the company notes, "the
system could subsequently provide registration cueing with an
optical colonoscope to help guide the physician to the target for
Finally, don't forget--when you are at RSNA 2003, stop by Booth
7811 and visit