The Technion has received its first human MRI research scanner made by Siemens. The device will operate within the framework of the May-Blum-Dahl Human MRI Research Center in its own 200 square meter facility in the Technion’s Joseph Center for Industrial Research.

The new Center, operated by the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering, will be used by researchers, professors, and students to carry out interdisciplinary research in a range of scientific and medical fields, as part of the Technion’s commitment to scientific excellence and the advancement of human health.

MRI is an important technology for structural and functional imaging of tissues and internal organs including the brain, is non-invasive, and avoids exposure to ionizing radiation. According to the Center’s manager, Dr. Dafna Link-Sourani of the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering, “the MRI study is characterized by being interdisciplinary and involving various engineering faculties (electrical, computers, mechanical, and material) and sciences (physics, chemistry, and biology), and of course medical research.”

According to Prof. Moti Freiman, who is the Center’s academic director, “Many researchers at the Technion have been waiting for the arrival of this essential research tool, and until now have been using other MRI centers for their research. The device will be available to researchers from a wide range of disciplines at the Technion and will also be used by industry researchers who want to deepen their R&D. The uniqueness of the new Center is its location within an engineering faculty, in an institute which is recognized as a global leader in innovative research, with a wide range of engineering fields. This will significantly help to advance innovation at the forefront of research and technology and to develop solutions to important clinical problems. There is no doubt that Siemens is pleased to have brought us the scanner, as we hope that Technion researchers can offer significant improvements in its performance.”

The commencement of the new center’s activity, expected later this year, is the result of ongoing fundraising led by Technion management, together with several Technion researchers: Professor Shulamit Levenberg, former dean of the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering; Dr. Moti Freiman, and Dr. Firas Mawase of the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering; Professor Tzipi Horowitz-Krauss of the Faculty of Science and Technology Education, and Dr. Yoad Kenett of the Faculty of Industrial Engineering and Management. 

This Center will be the first human research MRI center of its kind in the north of the country and is also set-up to explore children’s development. To that end, it includes a mock scanner, making it possible to acclimate children and infants to the imaging process prior to entering the actual device.