Brain Imaging Network (BIN)

The Brain Imaging network (BIN) – Portugal is a single modality Node, offering open access to PET and MR technologies for human and preclinical imaging, with particular focus on neuroimaging. The Node provides expertise in the multimodal MR/PET imaging, machine learning approaches and development of new radiolabeled molecules that can be used as tracers for processes that cannot currently be studied with PET, in clinical neuroscience, oncology and cardiology. Work is complemented by studies on developing new nuclides on the cyclotron to respond to new clinical and research needs and also services to the local pharmaceutical companies regarding pre-clinical testing of new, candidate drugs currently under development.

Specialties and expertise of the Node

The BIN Node offers an innovative technology at European leading level, because it combines PET and MR studies of the same subject in the same day (often two PET in the same visit, because of the possibilities of using short lived Carbon 11 tracers and one or more MR scans). The feasibility of MR-PET projects is ensured by the availability of a local Radiopharmacy-CYCLOTRON Facility which helps to provide PET- radiotracers adequate for specific research questions. A number of radiotracers (focus on F18, C11, GA68, CU64 and N13), allow for flexible exploitation of multiple applications. A local clinical trial Unit is also present at the Node, to provide researchers support in their interaction with regulatory authorities. Machine learning approaches are also a strong asset.

Offered Technologies

Technologies Euro-BioImaging
micro-MRI/MRS (Field >= 7 T) (HF)
in vivo optical imaging (OI)
PhotoAcoustic Imaging (PAI) - med
MRI/MRS (< 7T)
Population Imaging (PI-med)
micro-MRI/MRS (>= 7T) - ex-vivo
Population Imaging (PI-data)

Additional services offered by the Node

  • Project planning and methodological setup, including clinical trials
  • Data processing and analysis
  • Data storage
  • Patient / Subject recruitment
  • Animal housing
  • Radiopharmacy

Instrument highlights

Our PET – Cyclotron facilities allow for flexible use of different types of radiotracers, short and long lived, the former even allowing for multiple scans in the same day.

Our MR facility has a research agreement with the Industrial provider which permits the implementation of high-end research protocols (WIPs, including multinuclear approaches).

An important feature is the ability to perform simultaneous EEG/fMRI and Transcraneal Magnetic Stimulation within the MR bore.

Contact details

Current URLs

https://www.uc.pt/en/icnas (Organic Unit)

https://www.uc.pt/en/uid/cibit (Research Support)

https://www.uc.pt/en/brainimaging (Focus on Neuroimaging Support)


Miguel Castelo-Branco, mcbranco@fmed.uc.pt (Coordinator)

Sonia Pires, soniapires@uc.pt (Administrative Office)

Sara Ribeiro, sararibeiro@uc.pt (Administrative Office)

Joao Castelhano, joaocastelhano@uc.pt (Imaging and Technical Support)

Catarina Duarte, CatarinaDuarte@uc.pt (Imaging and Technical Support)

Pedro Almeida, palmeida@securenetworks.pt (IT Technical Support)

Antero Abrunhosa, antero@pet.uc.pt (Head of University Organic Unit)

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