Preclinical Imaging Centre (PRIME) - Molecular Imaging Dutch Node

The Dutch Preclinical Imaging Center PRIME – Molecular Imaging Node is a dual-sited Node that consists of the Preclinical Imaging Centre (PRIME), Radboud University Nijmegen, and the Intravital Microscopy Facility (IMF), Hubrecht Institute, Utrecht. This Node is a centralized facility for multimodality imaging of small animals, such as mice and rats. PRIME is the only centre in the Netherlands where more than four imaging modalities for small animal imaging are housed under one roof in one facility. The intravital microscopy laboratory offers advanced genetic mouse models and has heavily invested in state-of-the-art imaging of small animals using multiphoton microscopy. PRIME functions as single-site facility for small animal imaging with state-of-the-art equipment and expertise for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET/CT), single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT/CT), intravital multi-photon fluorescence imaging (MPFI) and high frequency ultrasound imaging (HFUS).

Specialties and expertise of the Node

PRIME is a state-of-the-art preclinical animal imaging centre. It is housed at the Central Animal Laboratory (CDL). PRIME is run by imaging experts from the departments of Radiology (Prof. Dr. Arend Heerschap), Nuclear Medicine (Dr. Sandra Heskamp), Cell Biology (Prof. Dr. Peter Friedl), Anatomy (Dr. Amanda Kiliaan), Cognitive Neuroscience (Prof. Dr. Richard van Wezel, Dr. Jeffrey Glennon) and the Medical Ultrasound Imaging Center (Prof. Dr. ir. Chris de Korte) and the Central Animal Laboratory (Prof. Dr. Otto Boerman) of the Radboud University Medical Centre in Nijmegen and the Intravital Microscopy Facility (IMF) of the Hubrecht Institute (Prof. Dr. Jacco van Rheenen). These investigators collaborate with numerous research groups in Europe and the US. More than 30% of the experiments are done in collaboration with investigators from outside the node. PRIME investigators work with both academic partners as well as with partners from industry.
Special features of the Dutch PRIME Node are:

  • A facility fully equipped for small animal imaging with eight imaging modalities (MRI, PET/CT, SPECT/CT and HFUS) under one roof.
  • A durable facility for small animal imaging with state of the art equipment and expertise.
  • A facility with multi-modal equipment and fully equipped behavioral rooms integrated in one center at one location to correlate e.g. motor skills and cognition with brain imaging.
  • A center that operates essentially as a SPF/DMII unit to allow experiments with transgenic animals and with adeno, retro and lenti-viruses.
  • A center with links to clinical/human imaging facilities.

Offered Technologies:

ISIDORe is a Horizon Europe funded project that brings together 154 partners from 32 countries around the world, and is designed to effectively support research on infectious diseases and increase preparedness for pandemic.

Technologies Euro-BioImaging ISIDORe
micro-MRI/MRS (>= 7T)
in vivo Optical Imaging
micro-MRI/MRS (>= 7T) - ex-vivo
micro-CT - ex-vivo

Additional services offered by the Node

  • Instruments
  • Technical assistance to run instrument
  • Methodological setup (e.g. design of study protocol and standard operation procedures)
  • Training in infrastructure use
  • Probe preparation
  • Animal preparation
  • Animal facilities
  • Wet lab space
  • Server Space
  • Data processing and analysis
  • Training workstations
  • Training seminar room
  • Housing facilities
  • Clinical trial insurance contracting
  • Pharmacovigilance
  • Regulatory affairs management service

Instrument highlights

  • microMRI/MRS - Bruker 7T Clinscan and 11.7T Biospec
  • High intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) insert for Bruker 7T Clinscan
  • microPET/CT - Siemens Inveon
  • microSPECT/CT - Milabs U-SPECT II
  • microUS - Vevo 2100, Visualsonics
  • Optical Imaging - IVIS Lumina
  • Four near-infrared and infrared multiphoton platforms for intravital microscopy (Lavision BioTec, Leica; upright or inverted); 700-1350 nm excitation range; up to 7 channels incl. FLI

Contact details

Prof. Dr. Arend Heerschap
Chairman of the steering board of PRIME
Radboudumc -PRIME

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