Nano-material scintillators for radiation-based medical imaging
Duke University is seeking a company interested in commercializing a novel and versatile technology that exploits nano-scale scintillating materials as imaging agents or screens. For example, these nanomaterials may be dispersed or targeted in vivo to illuminate or locate specific targets (e.g., tumors) via x-ray excitation, or be constructed into CT screens that provide sub-micron resolution imaging of tissues, vessels, or organs in the body through the innate capacity of these nanoparticles to correlate radiation dose with emitted light intensity. In addition, these new detectors may be used in energy discriminating mode in CT imaging. Current dual energy CT technology, for example, employs two banks of detectors (dual heads) at a 45-degree angle; one bank of detectors is set for 120 kVp x-rays while the other is set for 80 kVp x-rays for iodine k-edge detection of iodine contrast materials. The energy discrimination capability of these new detectors is thus ideal for dual energy CT imaging.