The "Physics and Engineering for Medicine" (PIM in French) is a collaborative research project focusing on the use of physics and engineering to enhance medical research and care. The project benefits from the unique environment of the Paris Saclay University providing a broad variety of labs with high-end expertise in physics for biomedical applications and in leading edge medical research. As a seed project, the PIM initiative first focuses on the development of methods to make the most of a novel combined PET-MR human imaging system to be installed in Orsay in July 2015.
All together, the actors involved in the project gather worldwide-recognized expertise in MRI, PET, radiation therapy including proton therapy, clinical expertise, dosimetry and signal and image processing for medical purpose.
The local environment therefore appears as one of the best place to significantly contribute to the emerging field of combined PET-MR imaging, where significant advances can only be expected through a tight collaboration between specialists from different areas.
Given that these PET-MRI instruments have only recently become available, the major areas in which they will make breakthrough in research and/or clinical practice remain to be identified.
The purpose of the PIM project is to contribute to the identification of these areas in two respects: first, by developing methodological approaches to make the best of this unique combination of imaging modalities, and second by studying and characterizing the added value of PET-MRI in a range of research and clinical applications that we identified as extremely promising.