SNMMI 2021 Young Investigator Awards

We are pleased to share that three Gordon Center members have received Young Investigator Award (YIA) recognition for their work presented at the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging Annual Conference.

Felicitas Detmer

Post-doctoral fellow Felicitas Detmer received the first place Cardiovascular Council YIA for her work on “Imaging of mitochondrial function in doxorubicin-induced cardiotoxicity

18G-TPP PET images for heart, vertical long axis

 This study aimed at assessing whether an acute cardiotoxic effect of doxorubicin-based chemotherapy could be detected by ΔΨT mapping in a swine model. Intra-coronary infusion of doxorubicin was associated with an acute, local depolarization of ΔΨT quantified using 18F-TPP+ PET. Future studies will aim at assessing the potential of ΔΨT mapping as a biomarker for early detection of DIC in a chronic setting.

Yanis Chemli
Motion correction demo in brain phantom
Result of the Hoffman brain phantom study. Top row: same PET slice reconstructed with A) 2mm static OSEM, B) 1mm static OSEM, C) proposed SR method and D) corresponding CT slice. Middle row: zoom on region of interest for corresponding images. Bottom row: Line profiles for corresponding data

PhD student Yanis Chemli received honorable mention in the Physics, Instrumentation and Data Sciences Council (PIDSC) YIA for his work “Super-resolution in brain PET Using a Real Time Motion Capture System“.

He was also featured in Science Daily.

 Super-resolution (SR) is a powerful methodology seeking to improve image resolution by exploiting the increased spatial sampling information obtained from multiple acquisitions of the same object performed with accurately known sub-resolution shifts. Moving phantom and non-human primate (NHP) experiments were performed on a PET/CT scanner (Discovery MI, GE Healthcare) using an external motion tracking device (Polaris Vega, NDI). For both phantom and NHP studies, the developed SR reconstruction method yielded PET images with visibly increased spatial resolution as compared to static acquisitions reconstructed using 1 or 2 mm voxels, allowing for improved visualization of small cortical and subcortical brain phantom structures.

Gengyang Yuan

Instructor Gengyang Yuan received the second place CMIIT YIA for his work “Synthesis and characterization of [18F]mG2P026 as a high contrast PET imaging ligand for metabotropic glutamate receptor 2“.

PET imaging results of [18F]mG2P026 in a cynomolgus monkey
PET imaging results of [18F]mG2P026 in a cynomolgus monkey

This work aims to develop a high contrast positron emission tomography (PET) imaging ligand to elucidate the mGluR2 neurobiology in vivo and promote the drug discovery on positive allosteric modulators (PAMs).  A potent mGluR2 ago-PAM, mG2P026 was identified from the SAR study of the triazolopyridines and radiolabeled via fluorine-18 in the automated synthetic module. Preclinical studies in rats and a cynomolgus monkey demonstrated the superior brain heterogeneity of [18F]mG2P026 and its unique feature of enhanced brain uptake following the pretreatment studies. After additional experimental validations, [18F]mG2P026 is a candidate for Investigational New Drug (IND) application with a potential use in the human subjects.