The year 1953 is often overlooked as a pivotal year in American history; yet, a number of monumental events occurred in the course of those 12 months. The Korean War ended, the Yankees won the World Series 4–2 against the Brooklyn Dodgers, and Sam Philips recorded the first Elvis Presley record in his Memphis studio. From Here to Eternity won the Oscar for Best Motion Picture that year, and Earnest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea received the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

 The Graseby injection pump shield is designed for use with high-energy isotopes, such as I-131, and suitable for Bexxar from Biodex Medical Systems.

The inaugural meeting of the Society of Nuclear Medicine (SNM of Reston, Va) also took place in 1953. Over the past 51 years, the annual meeting has grown to become the world’s largest educational and networking event in nuclear medicine. This year, the organization is hosting its gathering June 19–23 in Philadelphia at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

 The AutoLoop from Bioscan is an efficient and easy-to-use system for the labeling of PET tracers.

The show will play host to a variety of educational and entertaining events, such as the Saturday Evening Event, which features the American Bandstand with musical guest Bobby Rydell. Also, and for the 27th consecutive year, Henry N. Wagner, Jr, MD, of the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, will share his views of the presented papers at the meeting. Wagner will relate current advances to previous work and to future directions in the field of nuclear medicine.

 The PMT 600 from Burle Industries is included in the company’s 64-anode Planacon line of products for gamma cameras and PET scanners.

But what would the SNM annual meeting be without the latest in technological innovations? The 2004 exhibition will feature demonstrations from more than 160 major manufacturers of equipment, products, and services in nuclear medicine technology. What follows is a preview of the medical imaging-related companies and the products and services they plan to display at the show, all of which are sure to leave their own marks in history.

ABX-CRO (Dresden, Germany) represents more than 7 years of experience conducting complex international clinical trials. The organization conducts multidisciplinary, multinational phase I dose-escalation trials with therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals. Previous experience includes projects with small molecules, cellular vaccines in oncology, rheumatology, nuclear medicine, and clinical neurophysiology.

 The X-SPECT, Gamma Medica’s second-generation MicroSPECT system, provides dual-modality capabilities for preclinical and small-animal imaging.

Alliance Imaging (Anaheim, Calif)—a provider of diagnostic imaging services that offers MRI, CT, PET, and PET/CT modalities—will be highlighting its cost-efficient solutions, quality equipment, skilled technologists, educational support, and reimbursement assistance. The company provides services on a full-time, interim, or mobile basis at more than 1,300 locations nationwide.

 In the fully reclined bed position (bottom), supine or prone imaging is possible in either 180? or 360? with the Pulsecdc from IS2 Medical Systems. In the upright chair position (top), this compact digital cardiac camera allows for easy patient loading.

Biodex Medical Systems (Shirley, NY) will introduce its new shielding solutions for preparing, transporting, and administering PET: Zevalin and Bexxar. The company also will feature items from its nuclear medicine department, including Atomlab dose calibrators, Atomlab thyroid uptake systems, lung ventilation accessories, and general radioactive shielding products—including its new Unit Dose Pigs, which are safe and cost-efficient shielding solutions.

Bioscan (Washington) will be exhibiting its new HiSPECT system at SNM. HiSPECT is a highly sensitive, small-animal imaging system that uses upgraded clinical SPECT cameras with interchangeable multi-pinhole aperture plates to maximize imaging sensitivity. The system’s reconstruction software maintains a high resolution with limited count data so that quantitative mouse images can be obtained in less than 15 minutes. Also featured will be Bioscan’s PET chemistry systems: the new MeI-Plus system, which was designed for reliable and automated production of methyl iodide and methyl triflate; and the AutoLoop system for the methylation and fluoroalkylation of PET tracers.

 MIMvista’s MIM 3.1 with Assisted Alignment allows for near real-time and interactive fusion, which is important for image-guided biopsy and therapy.

Burle Industries (Lancaster, Pa) will be unveiling its 64-anode Planacon line, which is aimed at revolutionizing the capabilities and form factor of today’s gamma cameras and PET scanners. The Planacon family of microchannel plate photomultiplier tubes offers a variety of multi-anode configurations in a low-profile design.

 The PEM Flex Solo PET scanner from Naviscan PET Systems is optimized for imaging small body parts.

Cardinal Health Inc (Cleveland) will be showcasing its Calrad Mark VI dose calibrator, which recently received FDA 510(k) clearance. Available through the company’s Radiation Management Services business, the Calrad Mark VI offers increased productivity, dose accuracy, and reduced patient dose. The device’s automated future dose calculations ensure that correct activities will be drawn each time. The Calrad Mark VI includes a touch-screen interface with a Windows XP-based embedded system. The company also will be displaying its Victoreen Advanced Survey Meter 990, which measures radiation to the specifications of health and medical physics applications. The product is designed for radiation safety officers, nuclear medicine practitioners, diagnostic X-ray technologists, hospital emergency room technologists, and environmental health physicists.

 The JETStream Workspace from Philips encompasses all the imaging elements of a nuclear cardiology laboratory into one environment.

Codonics (Middleburg Heights, Ohio) will be displaying Horizon, the company’s newest medical imager. The printer provides the versatility of a dry film imager, a color imager, and a grayscale paper imager, but does not require operator intervention to switch between color and grayscale printing.

The Horizon outputs diagnostic images on standard-size film and is able to print color and grayscale images on a variety of paper sizes. The Horizon also features a built-in backup system, should the user’s network fail.

 IDL iTools from Research Systems Inc provides dual-volume rendering of CT data.

DMS Health Technologies (Fargo, ND) sells, installs, and services a variety of medical imaging and patient monitoring products. The company’s diagnostic imaging products include radiographic, fluoroscopic, vascular, cardiovascular, CT, MRI, PACS, and ultrasound. While exhibiting at the show, the company will be focusing on its mobile PET and nuclear medicine, interim PET, fixed-site PET, and time lease for PET.

Gamma Medica (Northridge, Calif) will display its LumaGem compact scintillation camera featuring a compact imaging head. LumaGem uses sestamibi and similar agents that localize in neovascular structures for breast cancer detection. The company also will display its X-SPECT, the second generation MicroSPECT, marketed exclusively by Siemens Medical Solutions (Malvern, Pa). The X-SPECT system combines the functional nuclear imaging technique of SPECT with anatomical imaging provided by X-ray CT.

 The Easy Breather from Vita Medical is an accessory to the Technegas Generator that helps poorly ventilated patients undertake normal studies with conventional agents.

IS2 Medical Systems Inc (Ottawa) will unveil its Pulsecdc, a compact, digital cardiac camera. The Pulsecdc features a large field of view, which guards against clipping of hearts, and the standard 90? dedicated dual head maximizes patient throughput. A windowed gantry offers the patient an open, comfortable, and nonintimidating experience.

Attendees visiting MIMvista Corp’s (Cleveland) booth will be able to experience the increased user functionality and time-saving features of the MIM 3.1 software, which includes the Assisted Alignment feature and other utilities to support radiotherapy planning. Assisted Alignment provides users with multimodality fusion from start to finish in approximately 10 seconds, reducing fusion processing and setup time. The system also provides medical personnel with automated registration of images while still allowing users to make adjustments, all with the touch of a button.

Molecular Imaging Corp (San Diego) will be showcasing its programs that minimize capital investment and offer flexible solutions through partnership and joint venture arrangements. This approach is geared toward hospitals, physicians, and freestanding imaging centers that prefer to outsource medical diagnostic services or form a joint venture with an experienced operator.

Naviscan PET Systems Inc (Rockville, Md) will be displaying its recently released, high-resolution PET scanner, the PEM Flex Solo. The scanner is optimized for imaging small body parts, such as breasts, hands, and feet. Also from Naviscan is the PEM Flex, a PET device that achieves high spatial resolution.

 UltraSPECT’s WBR algorithm incorporates various physical effects, such as scattering, attenuation, and the marginal penetration through the collimator septa.

Numa Inc (Amherst, NH) will be exhibiting a variety of products at this year’s show. The company will be announcing the release of its NumaLink 3.0, which offers DICOM connectivity between OEM workstations, legacy non-DICOM–capable systems, and support for processed/reconstructed data and screen saves. NumaLink 3.0 allows nuclear medicine facilities to make their existing legacy equipment DICOM 3.0 compatible, facilitating the connectivity to new DICOM-capable workstations, viewers, and hospital-wide PACS systems. Next, NumaList enables non-worklist–compliant systems to gain the advantages of a DICOM modality worklist. NumaList adds or corrects DICOM modality worklist information in DICOM image files, enabling the correct patient demographic information to be added to the DICOM images with little or no user input. Finally, the NumaStore DVD Image Management System is a medical image management device tailored to the needs of nuclear medicine, nuclear cardiology, PET, and PET/CT departments. It provides safe, long-term storage while managing the flow of images throughout the nuclear medicine department and beyond.

Philips Medical Systems (Bothell, Wash) will introduce its JETStream Workspace. The system makes it possible for displaying, processing, reviewing, reporting, and image archiving to exist in one environment at a single location or distributed throughout the department in multiple locations. The system also incorporates user-centric technology at the heart of its design. Also on display from Philips will be the CardioMD with Vantage Pro—currently pending FDA 510(k) clearance—a compact, dedicated nuclear cardiology gamma camera designed to meet the specialized requirements of an office-based practice.

Research Systems Inc (Boulder, Colo) will be showcasing its medical imaging applications developed with interactive data language (IDL). The company will demonstrate IDL 6.0, a system that gives professionals the ability to create 3-D visualizations of volumetric medical data with iTools; display, process, analyze, measure, and interact with medical images; integrate legacy code and call external libraries and algorithms; and distribute applications with several options, including IDL’s free runtime utility called the IDL Virtual Machine.

Recently awarded FDA 510(k) clearance, Shared PET Imaging LLC (Canton, Ohio) will be exhibiting its Clarity software line of products, which includes ClarityPET. The software enables physicians to review the orthogonal views and 3-D maximum intensity projections of a PET study in several configurable interfaces. While allowing physicians to visualize the results of a PET scan, ClarityPET focuses on ease of use and portability. Also on display will be ClarityFusion, a multimodality fusion software package that combines ClarityPET with DICOM-compliance multimodality fusion. It allows physicians to compare PET studies to CT, MRI, and other modalities while maintaining simplicity at the user interface. Finally, ClarityFusion Scan Manager provides a Web-based, single-point software for scheduling and radiation safety isotope tracking.

Toshiba America Medical Systems (Tustin, Calif) will be displaying the variable-angle gamma camera. The combines system performance and patient-focused technology to address cardiology and oncology diagnosis needs. The camera uses dual detectors with 76?, 90?, and 180? angulation for whole-body scanning, general purpose applications, and SPECT imaging. Using the company’s HD4 detector technology and e.soft 3.5, the provides quick patient setup and collimator exchange as well as faster access to results and high throughput for every acquisition type.

UltraSPECT Inc (Brookfield, Wis) will display its Xpress.bone and Xact.bone resolution recovery products, which are based upon the company’s wide beam reconstruction (WBR) technology. This technology uses an accurate physical model in conjunction with various mathematical solutions to reconstruct 3-D images from 2-D projections or to enhance static and whole-body images. Based on WBR technology, the Xact.bone products are optimized to deliver high image resolution for bone SPECT as well as static and whole body images. The Xpress.bone products are optimized to increase system and department productivity by reducing acquisition times by as much as 50% while providing enhanced image quality.

Vita Medical Ltd (Lucas Heights, New South Wales, Australia) will have a variety of products available for viewing, including the Technegas Generator and the associated single-use patient administration set (PAS). The Technegas Generator produces the technegas ventilation agent using a heating process, and is then delivered to a patient’s lungs via the PAS. Patients are routinely imaged on a gamma camera to demonstrate a diagnosis of pulmonary embolism. Designed as an accessory to the generator, the Easy Breather provides a positive pressure to deliver technegas to elderly and/or poorly ventilated patients who are otherwise unable to undertake normal ventilation study with conventional agents.

With the wealth of information being presented at the SNM Annual Meeting, rest assured that Medical Imaging will be there, too, gaining insider details for the imaging industry. Stop by and see us at Booth 145. And don’t miss our post-SNM issues, featuring more product and technology highlights from the show.

Schools of Thought
In addition to product manufacturers, a number of organizations serving the field of nuclear medicine also will be available for discussion at this year’s meeting. These are two of them.

The Academy of Molecular Imaging (AMI of Los Angeles) is an international organization that focuses on the school of thought, scientific paradigms, and clinical practices of molecular imaging to advance the growing field of molecular medicine. The AMI is composed of four institutes: the Institute for Molecular Imaging, the Institute for Clinical PET, the Society for Non-Invasive Imaging in Drug Development, and the Institute for Molecular Technologies.

The American College of Radiology (ACR of Reston, Va) will be showcasing its accreditation program for nuclear medicine and PET physicians. The voluntary accreditation program provides nuclear medicine and PET physicians with an opportunity for comprehensive review and evaluation of their nuclear medicine/PET facility, personnel qualifications, image quality, equipment, quality control procedures, and quality assurance programs through a peer review mechanism.


Lori Sichtermann is associate editor of Medical Imaging.