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MRI Homepage

FDA: No harmful effects with brain retention of gadolinium-based contrast agents Findings contrast with those of European Medicines Agency

Siemens and HeartIT ink deal for cardiovascular MR software Six of the 15 largest cardiac MR centers in the U.S. already use Precession

GE and Teleradiology Solutions partner to address India's radiologist shortage A big boost for outsourcing image interpretation

Study finds MR is cost-effective for detecting prostate cancer, guiding biopsies Research suggests may be superior to transrectal ultrasound

Study finds surgeon utilization of breast MR is influenced by their peers One way social contagion is impacting the delivery of health care

GE and Partners HealthCare forge 10-year AI collaboration Paving the way for a more intelligent care continuum

First essential tremor patient in Pennsylvania treated with MRgFUS symptom-free "Nothing short of spectacular," says surgeon

Boston Scientific's S-ICD system found to have low complication rate Promising study outcome for leadless cardiac implant

The UK installed base for MR is old and the upgrade pathway is unclear: Survey One-third of MR systems reviewed are over 10 years old

INSIGHTEC wins FDA OK for Exablate Neuro Model 4000 with 1.5T MR Expanding access to MR-guided focused ultrasound for essential tremor

Prototype for animal testing in the works

Researchers are developing an army of tiny MR-powered robots to deliver cancer drugs

by Lauren Dubinsky , Senior Reporter
Imagine tiny robots, called microsurgeons, that physicians can steer through blood vessels to deliver cancer drugs. Researchers at the University of Houston and Houston Methodist Hospital are working on making that a reality.

The team is developing imaging technology, control algorithms, ultrafast computational methods and human-machine immersion methods to harness the power of an MR scanner. MR will be used to both provide imaging and steer the .5- to-2-millimeter-robots through the body.

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Even the fastest MR systems on the market are too slow for this procedure and have a time lag before the information is available. Real-time control is required, since blood vessels move around the body and surgeons need to see the anatomy as well as the robot to ensure it’s moving correctly.

MR imaging generates enough magnetic force to move the robots through the body’s venous system, but it can’t penetrate tumors or other tissues. To address that, the team is working on two designs — one based on the principle of mechanical resonance and the modeled after a self-assembling surgical tool.

The University of Houston received a $608,000 Synergy Award from the National Science Foundation to develop a prototype suitable for animal testing. The grant is awarded through NSF’s Cyber-Physical Systems program.

The research team’s goal is to use the power of MR to target delivery with dozens of robots throughout the body.

Even though a single robot is capable of targeting a lesion to deliver chemotherapy or another treatment, the researchers caution that this isn’t practical for late-stage cancer.

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