The first NIF Cath Lab, dedicated to large animal models of human disease, has been installed at SAHMRI as a part of the South Australian NIF Node.
A Cath Lab, short for catheterisation laboratory, uses X-rays and computerised detector technology to visualise the placement of catheters and their manipulations within the cardiovascular system and provide superb image quality at a low X-ray dose for endovascular and a wide variety of preclinical fluoroscopy applications. The Large Animal Research Imaging Facility (LARIF) NIF Node is now capable of delivering exceptional fluoroscopic images with better contrast for lung imaging. This makes it ideally suited for the acquisition of images to be used by 4DX in the precise measurement of regional and total gas and blood flow in the naturally ventilating lung.
Prof Chris Christou, NIF Node Director and Director of PIRL, expects the new facility to enhance their existing capabilities, saying, “The completion of our cathlab is an exciting new development which has opened a suite of research capabilities to assist cardiovascular and respiratory researchers. It helps expand our already impressive imaging capabilities for the advancement of medical research.”
Key users of the Cath Lab include cardiology research groups and Medical Devices companies advancing cardiac disease treatments. In addition, researchers can exploit the placement of vascular catheters for the delivery of drugs or stem cells to particular organ beds. Finally, those who develop models of pulmonary disease may use the 4DX technology to study pulmonary function in combination with the Cath Lab capabilities.