Updated on 9 October 2012
The technology under research can be used to diagnose Alzheimer's disease in minutes using a simple brain scan
Singapore: Groundbreaking research taking place at the University of York, UK, could lead to Alzheimer's disease being diagnosed in minutes using a simple brain scan. Scientists are working on new technology that could revolutionize the way in which Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans are used to view the molecular events behind diseases like Alzheimer's, without invasive procedure, by increasing the sensitivity of an average hospital scanner by 200,000 times.
The technology underpinning this project, SABRE (Signal Amplification by Reversible Exchange), has received a strategic award of approximately $5.7 million (£3.6 million) from the Wellcome Trust to fund a team of seven post-doctoral researchers from this month.
The new grant brings the total support for SABRE from the Wellcome Trust, the Wolfson Foundation, Bruker Biospin, the University of York and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to over $20 million (£12.5 million) in the last three years.
A new Centre for Hyperpolarisation in Magnetic Resonance (CHyM) is being purpose-built at York to house the project. The building, which is nearing completion at York Science Park, includes a chemical laboratory, four high field nuclear magnetic resonance systems and space for 30 research scientists.
The SABRE project is led by Professor Simon Duckett, from the Department of Chemistry at York, Professor Gary Green, from the York Neuroimaging Centre (YNiC) and Professor Hugh Perry, from the Centre for Biological Sciences, University of Southampton.