Author(s): MartBonmat L, Sopena R, Bartumeus P, Sopena P
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Abstract In multimodality imaging, the need to combine morphofunctional information can be approached by either acquiring images at different times (asynchronous), and fused them through digital image manipulation techniques or simultaneously acquiring images (synchronous) and merging them automatically. The asynchronous post-processing solution presents various constraints, mainly conditioned by the different positioning of the patient in the two scans acquired at different times in separated machines. The best solution to achieve consistency in time and space is obtained by the synchronous image acquisition. There are many multimodal technologies in molecular imaging. In this review we will focus on those multimodality image techniques more commonly used in the field of diagnostic imaging (SPECT-CT, PET-CT) and new developments (as PET-MR). The technological innovations and development of new tracers and smart probes are the main key points that will condition multimodality image and diagnostic imaging professionals' future. Although SPECT-CT and PET-CT are standard in most clinical scenarios, MR imaging has some advantages, providing excellent soft-tissue contrast and multidimensional functional, structural and morphological information. The next frontier is to develop efficient detectors and electronics systems capable of detecting two modality signals at the same time. Not only PET-MR but also MR-US or optic-PET will be introduced in clinical scenarios. Even more, MR diffusion-weighted, pharmacokinetic imaging, spectroscopy or functional BOLD imaging will merge with PET tracers to further increase molecular imaging as a relevant medical discipline. Multimodality imaging techniques will play a leading role in relevant clinical applications. The development of new diagnostic imaging research areas, mainly in the field of oncology, cardiology and neuropsychiatry, will impact the way medicine is performed today. Both clinical and experimental multimodality studies, in humans and animals, will have to demonstrate an efficient use of the imaging information provided by the modalities to affect the future of medical imaging.
This article was published in Contrast Media Mol Imaging
and referenced in OMICS Journal of Radiology