Prototype Small-Animal PET-CT Imaging System for Image-Guided Radiation Therapy

Ekaterina Mikhaylova, Jamison Brooks, Darren M. Zuro, Farouk Nouizi, Maciej Kujawski, Srideshikan Sargur Madabushi, Jinyi Qi, Mengxi Zhang, Junie Chea, Erasmus K. Poku, Nicole Bowles, Jeffrey Y.C. Wong, John E. Shively, Paul J. Yazaki, Gultekin Gulsen, Simon R. Cherry, Susanta K. Hui

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Molecular imaging is becoming essential for precision targeted radiation therapy, yet progress is hindered from a lack of integrated imaging and treatment systems. We report the development of a prototype positron emission tomography (PET) scanner integrated into a commercial cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) based small animal irradiation system for molecular-image-guided, targeted external beam radiation therapy. The PET component consists of two rotating Hamamatsu time-of-flight PET modules positioned with a bore diameter of 101.6 mm and a radial field-of-view of 53.1 mm. The measured energy resolution after linearity correction at 511 KeV was 12.9% and the timing resolution was 283.6 ps. The measured spatial resolutions at the field-of-view center and 5 mm off the radial center were 2.6 mm $\times2.6$ mm $\times1.6$ mm and 2.6 mm $\times2.6$ mm $\times2.7$ mm respectively. 18F-Fluorodeoxyglucose-based PET imaging of a NEMA NU 4-2008 phantom resolved cylindrical volumes with diameters as small as 3 mm. To validate the system in-vivo, we performed 64Cu-DOTA-M5A PET and computed tomography (CT) imaging of carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA)-positive colorectal cancer in athymic nude mice and compared the results with a commercially available Siemens Inveon PET/CT system. The prototype PET system performed comparably to the Siemens system for identifying the location, size, and shape of tumors. Regions of heterogeneous 64Cu-DOTA-M5A uptake were observed. Using 64Cu-DOTA-M5A PET and CT images, a Monte Carlo-based radiation treatment plan was created to escalate the dose to the 64Cu-DOTA-M5A-based, highly active, biological target volume while largely sparing the normal tissue. Results demonstrate the feasibility of molecular-image-guided treatment plans using the prototype theranostic system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8853245
Pages (from-to)143207-143216
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Access
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019


  • Molecular imaging
  • multimodal imaging
  • targeted radiation
  • theranostic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)


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