Facilities  
 

Human MRI Scanning

Major Instrumentation
The CfN utilizes MRI scanners within the Center for Advanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Spectroscopy (CAMRIS) in the Department of Radiology within the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP). CAMRIS currently operates two whole-body human MRI scanners fully dedicated for research protocols, a 1.5 Tesla Siemens Avanto and a 3.0 Tesla Siemens Prisma Fit. Limited access to clinical scanners for research protocols is also possible through special arrangements with CAMRIS for a 3.0 Tim Trio, 1.5T Avanto, 1.5T Espree and other Siemens Instruments.

The CfN also manages a Siemens Prisma 3 Tesla whole-body MRI with a 64-channel head/neck array. This system includes s 64-channel head/neck receiver and a 20 channel head-only receiver.  The Prisma features “connectome” gradients with 80mT/m maximum gradient amplitude and 200 T/m/s maximum slew rate and a stabilized gantry that are optimized for DTI, along with and on-board GPU processor to allow rapid image reconstruction for multiband EPI and other high-throughput imaging.  Ancillary equipment for this system includes an MRI-compatible LCD panel (InVivo SensaVue), noise-cancelling headphone/microphone (OptoAcoustics), fiberoptic button/trackball/joystick/grip force response system (Current Designs), in-bore video monitoring (MRC Systems), and MRI-compatible eye-tracking (SRS).

Adjasent to The 3T Prisma MRI, CfN also manages a Siemens 7 Tesla whole-body MRI with a 32-channel head array. This system is being upgraded to a new Siemens Terra configuration, which includes the same high performance “connectome” gradients used in the Siemens Prisma scanner and native parallel transmission capabilities. Ancillary equipment for this system includes an MRI-compatible LCD panel (InVivo SensaVue), noise-cancelling headphone/microphone (OptoAcoustics), fiberoptic button/trackball/joystick/grip force response system (Current Designs), in-bore video monitoring (MRC Systems), and MRI-compatible eye-tracking (Avotek). These MRI resources, along with testing and exam rooms, are located in the basement of the Stellar Chance Building in the Perelman School of Medicine. 

All of these research-dedicated MRI systems at HUP and Stellar-Chance Bldg. are capable of multi-band EPI and include ancillary insrumentation for stimulus delivery and biobehavioral response monitoring including eye-tracking, noise cancelling bidirectional audio, visual stimulus delivery, and fiberoptic response monitoring with button, trackball, joystick, and grip force devices.  Capabilities for concurrent EEG are also available. Please visit the Resources page for details on 3T Prisma and 7T MRI scanners.

The newest calendar website is: https://pathbio.med.upenn.edu/camris/dogfish/

Please contact the calendar administrator, Margaret Ryan, to set up a new account once your protocol has been approved by Penn's IRB and the CAMRIS Committee. Phone: 215-573-8486 E-mail: ryanm@mail.med.upenn.edu.

 

Mock Scanners
The CfN's original mock scanner was located in Room B19, Stemmler Hall Basement. . It was fabricated from our old GE scanner shell and closely replicates the subject's experience during fMRI including a realistic scanner face and bore, head coil, stimulus presentation and response, scanner sounds, and triggering with each mock TR. Subject head movements are monitored with an inertial device and displayed in real time. Due to construction, this resource has been decommissioned

As of October 1, 2015, we have a new mock scanner/MRI Simulator purchased from Psychology Software Tools, Inc. It is model # PST-100355 and equipped with MoTrak (motion tracking) and SimFx (sound simulation and presentation) Software, also from Psychology Software Tools, Inc.

This new mock scanner was installed in Room C512 of the SOM Richards Bldg. but has recently moved. The current location of the CfN mock scanner is Room 304, Levin Building. The key for this room is located in a lock box outside of Room 301, Please contact Margaret Ryan for the code to the lock box. Kindly return the key to this location when finished.

The mock scanner creates a realistic fMRI environment so that subjects may be desensitized and focus more easily on the tasks they are to perform.

This resource can be reserved by individual protocols or labs by calling 215-573-8486 or contact Margaret Ryan (ryanm@mail.med.upenn.edu) for calendar access.

 

Consulting

Extensive expertise in pulse programming, radiofrequency coil design, and pulse sequence design is available within the CfN and the Department of Radiology. Access to research scanners requires regulatory approval and scheduling through the CfN on-line calendar.

Stimulus and Response Monitoring
Both 1.5T and 3T research scanners within CAMRIS at HUP are equipped with stimulus delivery and monitoring systems for fMRI research. These include Sanyo SXGA 4200 lumens projectors with Sanyo Long Throw zoom lens for rear-view/rear-projection onto Mylar screens. Video signals are carried into the magnet room using a Lightwave FiberLynx optical-fiber VGA connection. Both the projector and the FiberLynx units are housed in custom RF shield boxes with filtered power receptacles. Images are viewed through mirrors mounted on the head coils. Audio stimuli may be presented via air-conduction headphones available on both the Siemens Sonata and TIM Trio 1.5T and 3T systems, or alternatively via Avotec audio systems Responses are monitored using FORP fiberoptic button boxes installed at 1.5T and 3T. Low pass filters in the magnet room penetration panels allow custom interfacing of other stimulus and monitoring equipment using DB-9 connectors. for HUP6, click here for instructions on how to use the scanner microphone At HUP6 (3T PRISMA MRI) and the 3T Prisma and 7T MRI machines in Stellar-Chance Bldg. have an MR compatible in-bore video camera (from MRC Systems GmbH) available for subject monitoring during fMRI experiments.

MRI Compatible EEG System. BrainAmp MR Plus system (Brain Products, Gilching, Germany) for recording EEG signal in the MR scanner simultaneously with fMRI acquisition. The hardware of this system consists of a MR compatible amplifier, two MR compatible power supplies, four 32-channel MR-compatible caps, and three 14-channel MR-compatible caps specifically designed for sleep study. This system also includes a complete set of softwares, including the Recorder for multifunctional EEG signal recording, the Recview for real time data analysis, and the Analyze 2 for offline data analysis.

 

MRI Compatible TMS System. A MagVenture MRI compatible system configuration based on the MagPro X100 with MagOption magnetic stimulator and the MRi-B91 coil is on order for use with our new 3T MRI system. This device provides the flexibility to do up to 100 pps (100Hz) stimulation rates. Besides the Biphasic waveform, it also offers capabilities to do Monophasic, Half Sine and Biphasic Burst (Theta Burst) waveform by simple selection from the screen menu, offers versatile trigger in/out capabilities to ensure easy interface with EEG, EMG and EP equipment, monitoring and read out of the realized output values (di/dt), storing and transferring stimulation/ system status data for each and every pulse in any given protocol. Within the user interface users can design and store up to 27 different protocols which can be easily recalled by simply push of a button.

 

MRI Compatible tDCS System. The neuroConn DC-STIMULATOR PLUS is a micro-processor-controlled constant current source. It features multistage monitoring of the current path and by continuously monitoring electrode impedance it can detect insufficient contact with the skin and automatically terminate stimulation. A remote mode enables external control by a voltage supply source and filter boxes and cables are available for operation within an fMRI scanner. The fMRI module module allows artifact-free MR images even during EPI sequences and has been tested for 1.5 and 3 Tesla scanners.

Animal MRI Scanning

The MR laboratories in the Small Animal Imaging Facility (SAIF) are located in two facilities: in the basement of the John Morgan Building in the Perleman School of Medicine and in the basement of the Founders Building of the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. The John Morgan facility houses a Varian 9.4 Tesla horizontal bore small animal MRI system. This system is equipped with 12 and 21 cm gradient insert tubes with maximum gradient strengths of 40 and 20 G/cm and a switching time of 200 µsec (Magnex Scientific, Abingdon, UK). This system is interfaced to a multi-nuclear dual channel DirectDrive console (Agilent, Palo Alto, CA) with full gradient and RF shaping capabilities and four-channel receiver array.  The receiver train of the DirectDrive console digitizes the data at the full bandwidth of the IF (20 MHz) with 14-bit resolution.  The system is equipped with a variety of coils including; a 72 mm ID dynamically detunable linear birdcage, a 4 channel phase array coil suitable for rat brain imaging, a 4 channel phased array surface coil suitable for mouse brain imaging, a 20 mm ID circularly polarized birdcage suitable for mouse brain.  This system is due to be upgraded to a Bruker console in late 2017 or early 2018.

 

A newly constructed preclinical imaging lab located in the Smilow Center for Translational Research adjacent to the Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine houses a research-dedicated 3 Tesla Siemens Trio (clinical) system for large animal MRI.  This system is equipped with a product 12-channel array head receiver.  4.7 T 50 cm horizontal bore and a 9.4 T 8.9 cm vertical bore animal MRI scanners are also located in this facility. The consoles on both systems were upgraded in 2009 and 2010 to the DirectDrive consoles. The 4.7 T system is equipped with a 39 cm ID gradient tube with a maximum gradient strength of 3 G/cm and a 12 cm ID gradient insert with a maximum gradient strength of 25 G/cm. The upgrade included a 4-channel receiver array and an assortment of M2M RF coils that include a dynamically detunable 72 mm ID linearly polarized birdcage, a 4 channel phased array suitable for mouse brains, a 4 channel phased array suitable for mouse brains, a 20 mm circularly polarized birdcage suitable for mouse brains, a 35 mm ID circularly polarized birdcage suitable for rat brains, and a 72 mm ID circularly polarized birdcage suitable for rat abdomens. A fully equipped animal surgery room is adjacent to the MR installation, with the facilities for surgery and animal preparation for MR imaging of large and small animals.

 

The 9.4 T vertical bore Is a three-channel Direct Drive system is equipped with 5 mm, 10 mm and 20 mm Varian and Doty double and triple tuned multinuclear high resolution probes.  The system is configured with a 55 mm ID 100 gauss/cm gradient insert. A variety of resonators specifically designed for observation of tumor xenografts in mouse models have been constructed in house for use with this system.  In addition, 20 mm ID and 11 mm ID resonators suitable for high resolution MR microscopic imaging and high resolution diffusion tensor imaging of fixed rat and mouse brains are available for use with this system.

 

The PET Imaging Facility at PSOM has four PET/CT scanners, hot labs for extracting doses, and a blood lab for sampling and counting:

 

Philips Gemini TF Ingenuity (PCAM), Gemini TF (Silverstein), and Gemini TF BB (PCAM), and Siemens mCT (PCAM): The Philips Gemini TF Ingenuity and TF instruments have an 18-cm axial FOV and 70-cm diameter gantry aperture, whereas the TF BB has an 85-cm aperture with additional functionality for Radiation Oncology and therapy planning. The intrinsic spatial resolution of these scanners is 4.8 mm, with energy resolution of 12% for good scatter rejection, and very good system timing resolution of 500-550 ps, which enables time-of-flight (TOF) measurement for improved image quality and data quantitation. The TOF information along with physical data corrections (e.g., scatter, attenuation) are included in the system model of the iterative ML-EM list-mode algorithm which is used for image reconstruction. Attenuation correction and anatomical registration are provided by the CT scanner. The Philips Gemini TF Ingenuity is shared 50/50 between research and clinical studies, whereas the other PET/CT scanners are used primarily for clinical studies. The Siemens mCT scanner, used exclusively for clinical studies, has similar performance characteristics to the Philips PET/CT scanners, although the axial FOV is 22-cm leading to higher sensitivity and faster patient throughput.

 

The Cyclotron and Radiochemistry Facility was built in 1985 and is a below grade building containing about 5100 sq. ft. of space with a Japan Steel Works BC3015, 30 MeV cyclotron.  The machine is capable of accelerating p, d, 3He, and 4He.  Beam currents of 10-20 mA are typical with a maximum current capability of 30-40 mA. We use protons at 22 MeV to produce 11C, 13N and most 18F-labeled tracers, and deuterons at 11 MeV for 15O, 18F-DOPA and E18F-5, (the latter two are produced from 18F gas).  In 2009 we added an IBA 18 MeV Cyclone machine into an expanded vault next to the existing JSW cyclotron. The new cyclotron provides for higher beam currents than are available on the JSW machine. Specifically, the 18F- production yield increases from 1.5 Ci to 10 Ci and 11C yield increases from 1 Ci to 2.5 Ci, thereby increasing yields of research tracers. While the JSW can only irradiate 1 target at a time, the IBA is capable of irradiating 2 targets simultaneously.  

 

The production facility is operated under cGMP regulations for human use compounds. The facility is divided into two sections; a clinical production laboratory where 18F-FDG, [18F]-DOPA, [18F]-EF-5 and 13N compounds are produced, and a multiuse research area in which new radiopharmaceuticals for cell studies, ligand labeling, and animal studies are developed.  The clinical lab currently has one general-purpose hot cell and two mini hot cells dedicated to 18FDG production. Equipment within the production lab includes an integrated high-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) and gas chromatography (GC) system from Agilent and a thin-film liquid chromatography (TLC) scanner that is also tied to the Agilent software. Two GE MX Coincidence boxes are used for FDG production. The multiuse research area includes four dedicated hot cells where 18F can be remotely delivered. Two of the hot cells are for 11C work; one contains a GE MeI synthesis unit, also directly plumbed to the target and an Agilent HPLC system capable of working with a prep column for separation of product. When the cyclotron vault was expanded in 2009 we also added 1000 sq. ft. of chemistry space, which became operational in 2012 with 3 new Comercer hot cells.

 

The chemistry lab includes a dedicated bio-safety hood for SPECT compounds, and an additional, validated HPLC/QC station for these compounds, addition refrigeration, ovens, and other equipment.  We have produced 99mTc labeled Trodat and 123I labeled ADAM and IMPY. SPECT and PET compounds have separate equipment and waste streams.

 

Small animal PET scanning. A small animal PET scanner (A-PET) is operating in the small animal imaging laboratory (Richards Building, room 511C), built in collaboration with Philips Medical Systems. This system has very high spatial resolution (approx 2 mm), with extremely high sensitivity and large field-of-view.

 

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation. TMS devices include a Magstim (Whitland, UK) Rapid Stimulator, a Magstim Superapid2 Stimulator, and a Magstim Bi-Stim paired pulse stimulator. The lab also employs multiple standard and air-cooled 70 mm figure-of eight coils as well as sham coils. The TMS lab utilizes the Brainsight Frameless stereotactic system (Rogue Research Inc., Montreal, Canada) for MRI-guided TMS research. Multiple Windows and Macintosh computers are employed to support Brainsight, stimulus presentation, and TMS pulse delivery. The laboratory also employs a NeuroConn (Ilmenau, Germany) full-band NEURO PRAX® direct current EEG system for simultaneous TMS/tDCS and EEG recording. The laboratory includes all appropriate ancillary TMS equipment (e.g. ear plugs) and an EMG unit for recording motor evoked potentials.  The laboratory also houses three battery-driven Magstim Eldith DC stimulators and sponge electrodes for administration of tDCS, as well as a Soterix (Soterix Medical, New York , USA) 4×1 Multi-Channel Interface for delivery of high definition tDCS (HD-tDCS).


Data A
nalysis/Computing

NNC Cluster. The NNC maintaine a high-performance computing cluster, consisting of 576 Intel Xeon compute cores with a maximum 62GB RAM per job, a 10Gb high-speed internal network, over 200TB of RAID-6 high-speed storage, and an LTO tape backup system.

 

CBICA Cluster. The Center for Biomedical Image Computing and Analytics cluster consist of 64 nodes, providing a total of 916 CPUs with 1364 hyper-threaded cores and 9.9TB of RAM. 18 nodes have 384GB of RAM each. Five of the compute nodes include NVidia GPU processors (K10, M2090, C1060), making 7408 thread-processors and 32GB of RAM available for GPU-enabled applications. Approximately 85TB disk space are available on a fibre-optical Storage Area Network (SAN).

High Performance Cluster. A new Biomedical Image Computing and Informatics Cluster (BICIC) is slated to be installed at Penn in 2017, funded in part through a successful NIH S10 proposal (PI Davatzikos). The cluster will have 111 compute nodes with 3216 physical Intel CPU cores and 66TB RAM. Employing Intel hyperthreading (HT) technology, the number of jobs that can be run in parallel increases to 5424. Additional servers will provide management, interactive access, storage, and backup functions. The cluster will be organized into four classes of nodes: 120 general-purpose compute nodes with 14 CPU cores (28 with hyperthreading) and 512GB of memory per node; 36 high-speed compute nodes featuring faster CPUs than the general nodes and very fast Infiniband networking for data sharing between nodes; 9 GPU-enabled nodes equipped with dual NVidia K80 graphical processing units (GPUs) with total of 9996 processors and 24GB of video memory per node; and 3 high-memory nodes with 128 cores (with hyperthreading) and 4TB of memory per node. This diversity of node configurations offers different hardware for different image processing scenarios. The cluster will offer over 400TB of RAID storage, organized into high-speed solid state drive (SSD) tiers providing 30TB of short-term storage and 370+TB of more economical serial attached SCSI hard drives for longer-term data storage. The SSD drives allow rapid reading and writing of files, reducing bottlenecks due to file IO during data processing.

 

Additional Neuroimaging Resources at Penn

 

The Center for Magnetic Resonance and Optical Research (CMROI, Director: Reddy) is an NIBIB-funded Regional Resource (RR) that has been involved in imaging technology development and translation for more than two decades.  Dr. Detre leads the Functional Imaging component of this RR, which primarily focuses on the development and validation of arterial spin labeled perfusion MRI.  Although the CMROI includes collaborative research, it is focused narrowly around technical innovation rather than infrastructure support.   The CMROI is supporteded as an NIBIB P41 Biomedical Technology Resource Center.

 

The Laboratory for Cognition and Neural Stimulation (LCNS, Director: Hamilton) pursues research in cognitive neuroscience and behavioral neurology using noninvasive brain stimulation techniques, including transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). Located in the Goddard Laboratories at the University of Pennsylvania, the LCNS houses multiple TMS devices,

 

The Center for Neuroengineering and Therapeutics (CNT, Director: Litt) is a new interdisciplinary center between Medicine and Bioengineering that supports the development of novel devices and signal processing algorithms for monitoring and treating brain disorders.

 

The Center for Cognitive Neuroscience (CCN, interim Director: Detre) is a multidisciplinary and multi-school Center dedicated to understanding the neural bases of human thought. Current research addresses the central problems of cognitive neuroscience, including perception, attention, learning, memory, language, decision-making, emotion and development. Research methods available through CCN include:  functional neuroimaging, behavioral testing of neurological and psychiatric patients, transcranial and direct current magnetic stimulation, scalp-recorded event-related potentials, intracranial recording, computational modeling, candidate gene studies and pharmacologic manipulations of cognitive processes.  Drs. Detre, Aguirre, Hamilton are Core faculty members of the CCN.

 

The Translational Biomedical Imaging Center (TBIC, Director: Schnall) in Penn’s Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics (ITMAT), funded in part through the NIH Roadmap Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA), supports the use of imaging in translational research primarily through a pilot project grant mechanism that supports approximately five pilot projects each year at a level of $50,000.  Typically one to two pilot projects are in the area of neuroimaging.  Dr. Detre and other NNC faculty participate in the review of these pilot projects.

 

The Center for Advanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Spectroscopy (CAMRIS, Director: Mankoff) is  responsible for maintenance, safety and staffing of Siemens human research MRI systems in the Department of Radiology. Maintenance includes service, upgrades and cryogen refills.  A local Siemens engineer is available to address malfunctions.  A CAMRIS committee, that includes represenation from the NNC, reviews applications for MRI research  studies on the Siemens systems for safety and feasibility and provides approval.  CAMRIS collects an hourly usage fee, currently $450/hr, to cover the cost of scanner use, including maintenance and staffing by a certified MRI technologist.  However, scheduling for neuroimaging research is handled by the Administrative Core of the NNC (see grant text).

 

The Small Animal Imaging Facility (SAIF, Director: Pickup) provides multi-modality radiological imaging and image analysis for cells, tissues and small animals. The SAIF combines state-of-the-art instrumentation and a nationally recognized staff to assist investigators with a wide range of imaging based experimental approaches. The SAIF currently provides a comprehensive suite of imaging modalities including: magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and spectroscopy (MRS); optical imaging (including bioluminescence, fluorescence, and near-infrared imaging); computed tomography (CT); positron emission tomography (PET); single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT); and ultrasound (US). In addition, dedicated housing is available for mice and rats undergoing longitudinal imaging studies. Ancillary facilities and resources of the SAIF are devoted to chemistry, radiochemistry, image analysis, and animal tumor models, including assistance with animal handling.

 

The Center for Neuroscience and Society (CNS, Director: Farah) focuses on the ethical, legal and social implications of neuroscience. The CNS seminar series provides neuroethics talks by local and invited experts and contributes to training in Responsible Conduct of Research. Several neurology faculty including Drs. Aguirre and Chatterjee participate.

 

The Penn Image Computing and Science Lab (PICSL, Director: Gee) is at the forefront of research and education in all of the quantitative methods represented, including: segmentation, registration, morphometry and shape analysis, with numerous interdisciplinary collaborations concerning advanced analysis of neuroimaging data as well as imaging data acquired in other organ systems, including all of the major and emerging modalities in biological/biomaterials imaging and in vivo medical imaging.

 

The Center for Biomedical Image Computing and Analytics (CBICA, Director: Davatzikos) focuses on the development and application of advanced computational and analytical techniques that quantify morphology and function from biomedical images, as well as on relating imaging phenotypes to genetic and molecular characterizations, and finally on integrating this information into diagnostic and predictive tools in an era of personalized medicine.

 

The Penn Institute for Biomedical Informatics (IBI, Director: Moore) provides an interdisciplinary home for faculty, staff and students interested in bioinformatics, clinical informatics, clinical research informatics, consumer health informatics, and public health informatics. It is our goal to improve healthcare and fundamental knowledge of biological systems by creating an informatics ecosystem through cutting-edge educational programs, computational infrastructure, and collaborative research.

 

The Penn Medicine Translational Neuroscience Center (PTNC) is a PSOM Center dedicated to accelerating and translating discoveries to transform the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of neuropsychiatric and neurological conditions.  The PTNC established the Translational Neuroscience Initiatives (TNIs) to catalyze the formation of high-impact teams and promote greater integration between basic laboratory neuroscience, clinical research, and clinical practice.  Two of foure TNI projects funded in 2016 utilize neuroimaging supported by the NNC.

 

Additional Neuroscience-related Core Research Support Facilities

 

The Mouse Behavioral Testing Unit Core (BTU) provides core facilities and services to test mice in state of the art assays of simple and complex behaviors, including the assessment of circadian rhythms and sleep, learning and memory, motor and sensory function, as well as behavioral assays relevant to translational studies of neurological, neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders. The core offers comprehensive behavior phenotyping of mice or can train lab personnel to perform the tests in the facility. In addition, we provide consultation on study design including appropriate tests, mouse line/strain, numbers of animals, control groups, and breeding strategies. The BTU core will also provide consultation regarding ULAR, IACUC and other regulatory issues. Assistance with data analysis is also available. Support for the Mouse BTU is provided by the Comprehensive Neuroscience Center, ITMAT, the Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology and PSOM.

 

The Electrophysiology Core is a facility that provides electrophysiological services for the Penn community including whole animal awake and behaving chronic EEG and depth electrode recordings, in situ synaptic physiology and plasticity recordings (e.g., LTP and LTD), patch clamp recordings from single cells in culture, and intraventricular injections of drugs or antibodies.  These experiments can be performed for laboratories or can be collaboratively performed with personnel from other laboratories.  Data analysis is also provided where needed.

 

The Cell & Developmental Biology (CDB) Microscopy Core is a full-service facility serving the entire Penn community including researchers at CHOP and The Wistar Institute. The Core provides personalized assistance on all aspects of imaging from consultation on experiment design to assisted imaging or hands-on training. The CDB also provides resources to help with image data analysis. The facility currently houses three laser scanning confocals, two spinning disk confocals, a widefield deconvolution microscope, and two widefield microscopes for routine work. In addition, the facility also houses a scanning electron microscope (SEM) and offer SEM sample preparation services.

 

The Confocal Microscopy Core provides investigators access to a computer-interfaced, laser-scanning confocal microscope that is suitable for high-resolution cellular and subcellular localization of molecules of interest. Services include:  confocal fluorescence imaging (one- or two-channel); confocal imaging of light reflecting materials; pixel-by-pixel registration of fluorescence and differential interference contrast (DIC) images; quantification of fluorescence intensity; image enhancement by background subtraction and image averaging; stereo pair visualization of confocal fluorescence images; 3-D reconstruction of confocal fluorescence images; and file output to optical disks and high resolution color slides/prints using an Image Graphics image recorder.

 

The Bioengineering Confocal-Multiphoton Microscopy Facility provides imaging technologies for research in cell and tissue biology and material sciences. Services are tailored to each investigator’s needs and experience, ranging from full technical support to independent facility use at reduced rates. Consultations and comprehensive training are provided. Capabilities include time-lapse imaging of live cells and tissues, ion ratio imaging, imaging of fixed cells and tissues, and fluorescent microarray imaging. Argon-Krypton visible light laser, Red Diode IR laser and a Coherent Titanium-Sapphire tunable near-infrared laser can be used for a broad spectrum of fluorescent dyes from infrared (e.g. Alexa Fluor 700 and BODIPY 650-X) to blue (e.g., DAPI and Hoechst). Multiple PMTs permit simultaneous acquisition of three fluorescent labels.

 

The Neurobehavior Testing Core provides core facilities and services to test mice in state of the art assays of simple and complex behaviors, including the assessment of circadian rhythms and sleep, learning and memory, motor and sensory function, as well as behavioral assays relevant to translational studies of neurological, neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders. The core offers comprehensive behavior phenotyping of mice or can train lab personnel to perform the tests in the facility. In addition, they provide consultation on study design including appropriate tests, mouse line/strain, numbers of animals, control groups, and breeding strategies. The core will also provide consultation regarding ULAR, IACUC and other regulatory issues. Assistance with data analysis is also available.

 

General Purpose Optics Laboratory. A fully operational optics laboratory (approximately 4000 square feet) is is localted in the Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Matter (LRSM), Physics Department.  The lab is equipped with a range of laser systems and a full complement of optical equipment.

 

Other Relevant Research Resources

 

The Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics (ITMAT), PSOM’s Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) program, supports research at the interface of basic and clinical research focusing on developing new and safer medicines. ITMAT includes faculty, basic research space, and the Clinical and Translational Research Center (CTRC), which now includes the former General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) of both Penn and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). ITMAT also offers research cores, educational programs (including a Masters in Translational Research), and research centers. ITMAT was designed to cluster and expand the many existing entities which support translational research. These included the General Clinical Research Centers (GCRCs) in both Penn and CHOP which have now been integrated into the Clinical and Translational Research Center, the former Center for Experimental Therapeutics (CET), the educational courses in patient oriented and translational research, including the Masters Program in Translational Research (MTR), elements of the Office of Human Research (OHR) and newly developed resources which support the translational mission. Catalyzed by the CTSA, ITMAT is now home for new Centers in Bioinformatics in Translation (BIIT), Translational Biomedical Imaging, Personalized Medicine in Translation (PERMIT)and Targeted Therapeutics and Nanomedicine (CT3N). Programs within ITMAT include those focused on Novel Biotherapeutics, Translational Biomechanics, Community Outreach and Commercialization and Entrepreneurship. 

 

The University Laboratory Animal Resources (ULAR) provides husbandry services, veterinary care and diagnostic services for research and teaching animals used by scientists from six different schools within Penn. More than 500,000 animals of 25 species are used annually for research and teaching on more than 1,600 approved protocols for more than 500 Principal Investigators in 14 vivarial locations.   Penn’s vivarial housing for research and teaching animals totals more than 169,711 square feet of indoor housing. All animal care facilities are fully accredited by the Association for the Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care.  In addition, ULAR provides professional and technical consultation, assistance, and training to administrators, researchers and their staff members on the humane, proper and efficient use of animals, design of new and renovated animal housing areas, and interaction with the public on animal use in biomedical research. It procures all animals used by the University, maintains programs to sustain animal health and minimize any pain or distress that may be experienced by research animals and maintains the legally required records pertaining to the procurement of animals. The rodent rooms in ULAR are temperature-controlled and on a 12 hour light/dark cycle.

 

The Biomedical Library, housed within PSOM, has a large collection of print and electronic journals, as well as many other services.  As of July 2010, the Biomedical Library had close to 100,000 volumes, and access to over 6,000 current serials in the health sciences, primarily electronic, and 1,300 e-books. In addition, faculty, students and staff can access all the collections of the Penn Libraries, which number more than 5,000,000 printed volumes, more than 40,000 online and print journals and thousands of databases, e-books and other digitized resources. The Library's holdings are supplemented by membership in the National Network/Libraries of Medicine and many other resource-sharing consortia, and electronic delivery of documents is standard. The Biomedical Library houses 80 public workstations, several printers and a scanner, a poster printing service, a 10-station training lab, a wireless network throughout the library, and sixteen lending-laptops. Group study rooms are outfitted with computers and large flat screen monitors. Biomedical Library staff can provide in-library and off-site training and individual research consults in searching life science databases (Medline, PubMed, Scopus, CINAHL, ISI Web of Science, etc.), use of bibliographic management software (RefWorks), and research and productivity skills (mobile resources, systematic reviews, retrieving full text articles, PowerPoint, Excel, molecular biology tools).

 

Electronics Shop. The electronics facility of the Center for Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Spectroscopy (CAMRIS) supports the development of hardware for MR applications and provides training in the design, construction and safe handling of coils for MRI and MRS. This laboratory is equipped with state of the art test equipment including two network analyzers (10 MHz to 1.3 GHz), a vector impedance meter (1-100 MHz), a sweep generator (1-400 MHz), a spectral analyzer (1-400 MHz), two 500 MHz oscilloscopes, two frequency synthesizers (0-160 and 0-500 MHz) and a function generator. The facility also includes all necessary equipment for constructing coils and customized circuits.

 

Machine Shop. A fully equipped machine shop is available for fabrication and repair of devices for neuroimaging research including phantoms, probes, coils, and animal positioners.


 

 
     
     
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