Centers of Research Excellence (CORE)

CORE labs help advance significant research in specific areas by providing dedicated imaging systems as shared resources. Our CORE labs focus on:

Small Animal Imaging 

The University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) Small Animal Imaging CORE was established in early 2008 in order to serve the Medical School and the extramural research community by providing state-of-the-art small-animal imaging.       

The imaging technology available at the Small Animal Imaging CORE facility enables tomographic imaging of animals from mice to rabbits and marmoset monkeys. It includes:

  • Bioscan NanoSPECT/CT camera for x-ray computerized tomography (CT) and single photon computerized tomography (SPECT)

  • Philips Medical System MOSAIC camera for positron emission computerized tomography (PET)

  • Two optical cameras, the IVIS-100 (Caliper) and the Pearl NIR Imager (Li-Cor) for detection of near infrared fluorophors 

Dr. Mary Rusckowski, Director of he Small Animal Imaging Center, located in Room SA-107A.

Image-guided Surgery 

Located within the New England Center for Stroke Research, this CORE facility offers UMMS investigators state-of-the-art image-guided intervention to accelerate discovery of clinically viable strategies for the delivery of therapeutic agents. Although the Center’s focus lies in cardiovascular imaging and intervention, previous work has included selective vascular drug delivery for cancer treatment and orthopedic device implantation.

The angiosurgical suite is dedicated to preclinical research and is home to:

  • The latest flat-panel detector x-ray system available today (Allura FD20 R3, Philips Medical Systems, Best, the Netherlands), which offers both cardiac and vascular imaging packages, 3-dimensional reconstruction angiography (3DRA), X-per™ cone beam computed tomography, motor driven tilt table, and various software prototypes that are not yet available for clinical use
  • Vascular analysis software with the ViewForum system

Ajay Wakhloo, MD, PhD, Clinical Director of the Image-guided Surgery CORE 
Matthew Gounis, PhD, Technical Director

Advanced MRI Center

This CORE facility provides the latest magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy capabilities to scientists, clinicians, government and industry, along with technical and clinical expertise for collaborative research.

The Center’s specialized techniques clarify functional, physiological and biochemical information from all organs of the body, enabling physicians to make more informed patient-care decisions. Additionally, researchers are better able to understand the mechanisms of such conditions as lung and heart disease, cancer, stroke, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, back pain and injuries, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, bipolar disease and depression. This facilitates the development of new therapies that can be safely and continuously evaluated throughout patient treatment.  

The Advanced MRI Center houses:

  • 3T Philips Achieva whole-body scanner complete with a full array of clinical and animal RF coils
  • Comprehensive physiologic monitoring system
  • Anesthesia infusion pump
  • Contrast injector

Dr. Matthew Gounis, Director 
Dr. Shaokuan ZhengMRI physicist

The Advanced MRI Center is on A-level of the School.

Breast CT Facility

The dedicated breast CT enables tomographic and fully 3D x-ray imaging of the breast.  There are only about six breast CT systems in the world, and the system at UMass Memorial Medical Center is one of the most technologically advanced.    

This is an experimental modality that is not currently approved by the FDA. The manufacturer, Koning Corporation, has received CE Mark approval in Europe for a version of this breast CT device.

The team at UMass Medical School has been conducting research to define the role of dedicated breast CT for the diagnosis and management of breast cancer. Dr's. Karellas, Glick, Vedantham and Gopal are collaborating in this endeavor; additional radiologists, along with surgical and medical oncologists, will be involved in study protocols going forward.