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UA researchers use $2M grant to reduce MRI scan times to 15 minutes

(Pixabay Photo)

PHOENIX — A team of University of Arizona researchers is working to reduce MRI scan times from 40-60 minutes to 15 minutes.

While welcomed by any patient needing an MRI, the shorter scan time is meant to help patients who have a hard time staying still — for example, people with Parkinson’s disease suffering from tremors.

The team is using a $2.1 million grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke to create the faster scanning technology.

The technology will also provide images with higher resolution, which can help doctors gain more information about the stage of diseases, possibly allowing earlier diagnosis.

“We want to address the boundaries of existing MRI protocol,” Nan-kuei Chen, principal investigator and associate professor in the UA Department of Biomedical Engineering, said in a press release.

“With this research, MRI scans will be faster and higher quality and will produce richer information, so we can be better informed on the stage of disease or will even be able to see if there’s any brain signal abnormality before the disease is diagnosed. With earlier detection, we might be able to delay the disease’s progress.”

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