Clinical trials facility
Our research programs are supported by various purpose-built resources and facilities, including highly sophisticated imaging technologies, clinical monitoring/trials and laboratories.
We collaborate with various research institutions including Nucleus Network and Neuroscience Trials Australia. See more.
The Clinical Trials Facility is embedded in the Neurology Ward at The Alfred with the capability for overnight and multi-day stays, multiple modalities for physiological monitoring, and a focus on early-phase trials.
Totalling six in-patient beds, an Epilepsy Monitoring Unit has been built alongside the Clinical Trials facility, providing one of the most advanced units with the largest capacity in Australia.
New purpose-built state-of-the-art basic neuroscience laboratories have been built in 2018 to investigate novel targets for the treatment of brain disease and to undertake pre-clinical testing of new therapies.
ARA-MBI’s preclinical imaging facility totals approximately 260 m2 in space and houses a Mediso Nano PET/CT, BioFLECT and a state-of-the-art 9.4 Tesla Bruker MRI. This comprehensive suite of imaging equipment facilitates cutting-edge research into functional and structural studies in animals, plants and materials. In addition to developing and implementing advanced imaging techniques, the facility also has extensive expertise in the analysis of a wide range of imaging data and can undertake or assist with all aspects of your research proposal.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
ARA-MBI’s preclinical imaging facility houses a state-of-the-art Bruker Biospec 9.4 Tesla MRI. This flagship instrument includes two cryogenically cooled (20 - 30 K) coils for mouse and rat brain imaging that give up to 3x the signal-to-noise of standard coils for unsurpassed image clarity. Room temperature coils include anatomically shaped receive-only coils for neurological and cardiac imaging in mice and rats as well as transmit and receive volume coils with internal diameters ranging from 23 mm to 86 mm. The system is also fitted with a broadband RF channel for arterial spin labeling and X-nuclei measurements and a dual-tuned volume resonator with internal diameter of 40 mm is available for 1H/23NA imaging.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) / X-Ray Computed Tomography (CT)
ARA-MBI’s preclinical imaging facility includes a Mediso Nano PET/CT instrument for high resolution scanning of small animals. The instrument provides a high-precision gantry for exact alignment of PET/CT data and with a gantry bore opening of 16 cm can accommodate imaging of mice, rats and rabbits. A complete 360° PET detector ring consisting of 12 modules provides ultra high resolution and sensitivity, with the reconstructed resolution in the centre of the field of view being less than 1.0 mm.
PET and/or CT scanning can extend up to 300 mm in the axial direction by automated translation of the bed for whole body imaging, with a transaxial range of 45-125 mm. Real time reconstruction of CT data can achieve voxel sizes in the range of 13-37 um. Low dose CT protocols (<50 mGy for a 3 minute scan) are compatible with longitudinal rodent studies.
Fluorescence Emission Computed Tomography (FLECT)
The BioFLECT instrument located in ARA-MBI’s preclinical imaging facility offers uniform sensitivity and approximately 1 mm resolution throughout the subject. The system includes the most commonly used laser/filer combinations and has a transaxial field of view (FOV) of 38 mm and an axial FOV of 100 mm (mice).