Philips PET-MR gets CE mark
Philips Electronics has recently received
the CE mark for the industry’s first
commercially available whole body
PET/MR imaging system, the Ingenuity TF
PET/MR. US FDA’s 510(k) certification is
pending and expected later this year.
Unlike Siemens’ integrated hybrid
PET/MR – the Biograph molecular MR,
which is yet to receive CE and FDA certification
– Philips’ PET/MR is a sequential
imaging system. Philip’s 3T MR and their
Astonish time-of-flight PET are three
metres apart and linked by a single table
which can rotate enabling a full-body scan
of a person by both systems in sequence.
(Middle East Health looked at Siemens’
Biograph molecular MR in the Jan-Feb
“With sequential imaging there is no
compromise on image quality,” Gene Saragnese, executive vice president and
CEO Imaging Systems, Philips Healthcare,
told Middle East Health during a meeting at
Arab Health in Dubai in January.
“There is only 27 seconds between the
two scans,” explained Saragnese. “And
there are not many areas of the body where
the state of physiology changes so rapidly
that sequential imaging will not be useful.
So it is important to maintain the highfidelity
of the images.”
Philips has developed software to coregister
the two images. The system can
also acquire separate PET and MR images.
Clinicians anticipate using the
Ingenuity TF PET/MR to screen patients
at high-risk for heart disease to ultimately
treat diseased cells prior to the formation
of dangerous coronary plaques. The system
may also be used to scan patients to detect
tumour formation or recurrence.
PET/MR system also makes it possible to
track whether a drug is reaching a tumour
or plaque and monitor efficacy on a
cellular level. Clinicians expect the new imaging
system to help identify disease earlier and
make the concept of personalised medicine
In addition to greater visualisation of
disease processes, the system can also
produce up to 70% less ionizing radiation
Zahi Fayad, PhD, of Mount Sinai School
of Medicine in New York City, has been
alpha and beta testing the system for two
years in collaboration with Philips. He said
the combination of PET and 3T MRI is
ideal for imaging atherosclerosis.
“PET will show us the amount of inflammation
that is present in arterial plaque,
the metabolic activity, while MRI, with its
high spatial resolution and excellent tissue
contrast, will help characterize the plaque
into its various components, such as lipids
and collagen,” he said.
Speaking to Cardiovascular Business, he
said: “We feel the two modalities are
extremely synergistic and additive and
together they resolve disadvantages
inherent to each test when used alone.
“With PET/MR, the patient can walk
into the outpatient centre, be scanned and
go home within an hour,” Fayad said. “It’s
a powerful model and, quite frankly, paradigm
He said that the system will initially
make its cardiovascular mark in the
carotid vasculature, and then move on to
the coronary arteries.
Studies on the system are ongoing at the
University of Geneva, Switzerland; Mount
Sinai Medical Center, New York; and FZD, Dresden, Germany.
Systems have been installed in
Cleveland, Geneva, Barcelona and one is
due to be installed in the cardiac centre in
“We are selling it in a number of locations
around the world,” says Fayad. “In the area of oncology we expect it to
provide differential diagnosis.
It has potential
in neurology, and a variety of areas.”
The MR provides the soft-tissue contrast
while the PET gives the physiological
information. And with new PET tracers
that are in the pipeline we can expect even
richer information, according to Philips.
This is another reason why Philips
decided to keep the two systems separate
and provide co-registration – so that they
could take advantage of future developments
in PET and MR. “To do this,
however, you need the best PET and the
best MR available.”
By hybridising these two modalities you
are forced to compromise on the quality of
the image, says Saragnese.
The University Hospital of Geneva
houses Europe’s first combined whole body
PET/MR system. Professor Osman Ratib,
chief of Nuclear Medicine, University of
Geneva, commented, “Our validation tests
show that bringing the two modalities
together improves the quality and accuracy
of diagnoses. The molecular imaging
provided by PET in conjunction with the
anatomy and tissue characterisation of MR
has enabled us to see the function and
metabolism of tissue more precisely than
ever before. The clinical cases have
already shown the advantages of being
able to perfectly superimpose PET over
MR images to detect lesions in various
organs. Previously, this was not possible
because the two studies took place at
different times, with different conditions
and with different patient positions.
Ratib sees the greatest value of
PET/MRI to be in improving the diagnostic
confidence of radiologists when
interpreting scans. This could enable radiologists
to make a definitive diagnosis
based on a PET/MRI study without having
to order additional scans.
of upload: 25th Apr 2011