The Comparative Medicine and Bioimaging Centre (CMCiB) opens its new facilities for research with bioimage

- Campus Can Ruti, Innovation, Research

The Director of the Germans Trias i Pujol Research Institute (IGTP), Manel Puig, and the President of Canon Medical, Toshio Takiguchi, visited the new bioimaging facilities at Center for Comparative Medicine and Bioimaging of Catalonia (CMCiB) on Monday 14 October. The President of Canon was accompanied by the President in Europe and the Director of the Medical Division in Spain and Portugal, to highlight the strategic importance of the CMCiB in the development of clinical and preclinical imaging research in Europe.

The Director of the Carlos III Health Institute, Raquel Yotti also attended the visit.

For the Director of the IGTP, Manel Puig, "It is very important to establish strong bonds between the researchers of the CMCiB, the IGTP, and Canon Medical. This relationship will provide us with the tools to advance faster in research; it will allow us to use bioimaging for biomarkers and diagnosis; while at the same time we will be able to participate in the improvement of techniques. This is doing research both with and in bioimaging. "

Along the same lines, Toshio Takiguchi, president of Canon, wanted to emphasize the importance of the existence of centers such as the CMCiB. "This Partnership represents a unique opportunity to collaborate between the different professionals of the Health System and industry, starting with preclinical research studies and working together to develop new products and solutions to improve the quality of life of the patients and the tools available to the professionals themselves".

Preclinical research using animal models has been key for the great developments in  biomedicine over the last century, bringing advances in research and innovation to life sciences and healthcare. It is still an important and compulsory step to develop  new treatments, drugs or surgical techniques. The rapid advancement of processing technology and a whole range of bio-imaging techniques have allowed us to make a paradigm shift in this field of research and the CMCiB is a clear example of how this will change the way research is done.

The relationship between the CMCiB and Canon Medical will provide access to the latest technology in bioimaging. All these necessary resources permit rapid progress towards the paradigm shift summarized as the the 3Rs (replace, reduce, refine), which is crucial to achieve a new way of doing high-performance pre-clinical research that will significantly reduce experimental time.

Another key feature of the CMCiB is that it is a link between the professionals developing preclinical research and the professionals developing the bioimaging technology, establishing a collaborative relationship to facilitate the growth of the technique as a research tool. The signal obtained by medical imaging devices is currently being elevated into an important biomarker susceptible to specific analysis alone or in combination with other optical data. This is one of the center's priority objectives, within the framework of the 3R policy drive: to both develop bioimaging technology and to use it as a research tool.

Bioimaging at the CMCiB

The IGTP CMCiB has three devices for bioimaging for small animals: a TAC, a bioluminescence device and an infrared device. The latest additions that complete the facilities are: a 3 Tesla magnetic resonance of, an operating theatre equipped for hemodynamics and X-ray  and a Surgical Arc.

This equipment enables researchers to carry out follow-up studies with high traceability of the marked molecules using infrared, a technique that is especially relevant in vascular studies. Thanks to bioluminescence, there will be a huge variety of markers that can be linked to metabolic reactions or of genetic transduction processes susceptible to similar tracing. The MRI 3T will allow state-of-the-art three-dimensional reconstructions of living systems.