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October 4, 2004
Human Brain Imaging Advances
The University Illinois at Chicago recently announced the installation of the most powerful human brain imaging system to date. While most fMRI systems in use today are powered 1.5-tesla or 3.0-telsa magnets, this new high resolution fMRI system has a 9.4-tesla magnet, built by GE Healthcare (a tesla is a large measuring unit of magnetic strength).
As I've mentioned many times, advances in neuroimaging are critically important in order to understand the workings of the human brain, detect diseases before their clinical signs appear, develop targeted drug therapies for illnesses and to provide a better understanding of learning disabilities. While I might not go as far as Dr. Keith Thulborn, director of the UIC Center for Magnetic Resonance Research, who claimed that this technological leap forward is as revolutionary to the medical community as the transition from radio to television was for society, I would suggest that this definitely a step toward our emerging neurosociety. Also, it looks like the neuroimaging group at University College London will now have some real competition.
Correction Update 10/10: Thanks to a reader a India for pointing out that in my haste to post this piece named the correct university in the first sentence. It is not the University of Chicago, but The University Illinois at Chicago.
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