Research Highlights - Diabetes

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The Lions Islet Imaging Lab is primarily supported by the Minnesota Lions Diabetes Foundation and the Schott Family Foundation. It is dedicated to advancing technologies that will support new therapies for the treatment of diabetes. Sam Stein and Brad Weegman are 3rd year graduate research assistants in the Medical Physics program working under the direction of Dr. Michael Garwood at the Center for Magnetic Resonance Research (CMRR). They work closely with many collaborators both here at the UofM, and outside of the university.

The primary goal of their work is to improve non-invasive MRS and MRI methods that support the development of a bio-artificial pancreas as a treatment for diabetes. Their project uses the unique ultra-high field magnet systems available at the CMRR to measure oxygen levels and oxygen consumption of tissue engineered devices both in vitro and in vivo. The novel methods they are developing can be used by researchers and physicians to determine the health status of an implanted graft.

Figures: These figures show images of the chemical oxygen sensor (highlighted in red) within an implanted bio-artificial pancreas. This sensor is probed non-invasively using the MRI systems to measure the oxygen levels and health status of the graft.