MADEIRA aims to improve 3D nuclear medical imaging technologies significantly. Achievements will be made in terms of reduction of radiation exposure, increase of spatial and temporal resolution. In consequence, the applied techniques will offer better and more detailed pictures for diagnosis obtained with less exposure to radioactivity. Due to the introduction of new diagnostic procedures such as CT, PET and SPECT, the individual dose caused by medical exposures rapidly grew in the last years. This is especially a subject to radiation protection for nuclear medical diagnosis since in this case radiopharmaceuticals are administered to the patient meaning not only a radiation exposure to the unhealthy tissue but also to the healthy tissue of large parts of the body. When dealing with cancer any improvement in the efficacy and availability of proper diagnostic procedures turns out into a benefit for the patients. Early diagnosis reduces mortality and other serious implications like loss of quality of living or high therapy costs. Diagnosis that provides information about - activity of the cancerous tissue - in what 3D region of the cancer and - what kind of cancer to be treated in each specific case is very important. 3D functional nuclear medicine imaging satisfies the above requirements. Especially the combination of today’s systems with CT scanners allows simultaneous acquisition of anatomical and functional information. MADEIRA will improve the efficacy and safety of 3D PET and SPECT functional imaging by optimising the spatial resolution, the signal-to-noise ratio and the knowledge of the temporal variation of the radiopharmaceuticals’ uptake in and clearance from tumour and healthy tissues and evaluating the corresponding patient dose. By this approach to an optimized imaging procedure gaining more information per administered dose MADEIRA will especially reduce the dose to healthy tissue of the patient.
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