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Quantum Life and Medical Science Directorate

Future PET Development Unit

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PET has evolved more and has become more commonplace. -PET is a diagnostic imaging method that detects radiation emitted from a test drug administered to get to the root cause of a disease. In Japan, research and development of component technologies such as photosensors are actively ongoing. However, in Japan where most PET equipment is being imported, the gears of industry-academia collaboration to put these developed technologies to practical use and deliver them to clinical practice are not always working well.

To overcome this situation, the National Institutes for Quantum and Science and Technology (QST) received Long-Term Large-Scale Research Grant from Nakatani Foundation, and established the "Future PET Development Unit" on April 1, 2022. The Future PET Development Unit is a global research hub in collaboration with Tohoku University, Chiba University, Dokkyo Medical University, and overseas research institutes.

Whole Gamma Imaging (WGI)

Through the formation of this unit, we aim to establish a research platform that covers both physic engineering and nuclear medicine and to achieve a paradigm shift to Whole Gamma Imaging (WGI), which is a unique concept that utilizes all available radiation for diagnosis. Conventional PET cannot detect most of the radiation emitted from test drugs, but once WGI is put into practical use, it is expected to visualize the causes of disease and the state of bodily functions that were previously undetectable.

The development of innovative medical devices has many challenges as the ideas are novel, and practical application will be a long and difficult road. However, if it is not put into practical use, it will not lead to progress in medicine. The Future PET Development Unit will work on research and development with the aim of realizing WGI under the slogan of "Bench to Clinical," which will deliver innovative technologies to clinical practice without prototypes ending up only in the laboratory. Graduate students, researchers and engineers who want to innovate medicine with next-generation technologies, why don't you join us in realizing WGI?

Concept image for WGI


Imaging Physics Group