The powerful Iseult scanner obtains images 10 times more precise than the MRI machines in hospitals. Photo Credit: AFP, Video: CEA

HealthTechnology France12. April 2024

We’ve Just Generated the Clearest-Ever Images of the Brain

In the Plateau de Saclay area, south of Paris, France, the world’s most powerful magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine produced the first and most precise images of human brains, giving healthcare professionals the best chances to cure illnesses that afflicted them effectively.

“We have seen a level of precision never reached before at the Atomic Energy Commission,” states physicist Alexandre Vignaud. “With this machine, we can see the tiny vessels that feed the cerebral cortex or details of the cerebellum that were almost invisible until now.”

France’s health authorities recently greenlit the scanning of humans. Over a few months, some 20 volunteers slid into the 90-centimeter opening of the five-meter cylinder. The machine houses a 132-ton magnet powered by a coil carrying a current of 1,500 amps and creates a magnetic field of 11.7 teslas – for reference, a refrigerator magnet measures up at roughly 0.001 tesla – a unit of measurement named after inventor Nikola Tesla. The images are ten times more precise than the MRIs used in hospitals, whose power doesn’t exceed three teslas. The machine will help to “better understand the relationship between the brain’s structure and cognitive functions, for example, when we read a book or carry out a mental calculation,” shedding light on neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s and psychological conditions like depression and schizophrenia.

Medical Xpress

:::::: Related Articles

Back to top button