Primary AppointmentRadiology and Medical Imaging
Department of Radiology and Medical Imaging, Fontaine Research Park
Charlottesville, VA 22903
Positron Emission Tomography Imaging of Remodeling of Myocardial Glucose Metabolism in Pressure Overload Left Ventricular Hypertrophy
Imaging the rodent heart is challenging due to the small size of the heart and the limited spatial intrinsic resolution of the microPET scanner. This results in severe partial volume averaging (PV) and spill-over (SP) of radioactivity from the LV blood pool to the myocardium at the early time points and vice-versa at the late time points in a dynamic PET scan of the rodent heart. Rapid heart motion results in further image blur confounding the effects of SP contamination in the image-derived blood input function. My laboratory focuses on the development of multi-parameter compartment models for simultaneous estimation of the blood input function with SP and PV corrections and the kinetic parameters from dynamic PET images of the heart, for quantifying myocardial glucose (using 18F-FDG) and fatty-acid (using 11C-Palmitate) metabolism and blood flow (using 13N-ammonia) in vivo. In collaboration with a number of investigators in the School of Medicine at UVA and UT in Houston, we have assembled a strong team to evaluate the time course of metabolic alterations in the hearts of spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) and relate these changes to the development of LVH and HF using advanced PET and MR imaging in vivo and ex vivo molecular and metabolic analysis in conjunction with hemodynamic measurements. The work in my laboratory is funded by the National Institute of Health's National Heart Lung and Blood Institute.