World’s Strongest Brain Imaging Magnet Has New Home in US

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CMRR director Kamil Ugurbil, Ph.D., stands next to the new 10.5T magnet

Minnesota: the land of 10,000 lakes and, now, the world’s strongest imaging magnet.

The University of Minnesota’s Center for Magnetic Resonance Research (CMRR) recently acquired the first 10.5 Tesla whole-body magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) magnet, which will be used for brain research. What researchers learn from this sophisticated tool could tell us more about what happens in Parkinson’s disease and could lead to better diagnostics and new therapies.

Tesla is a unit of measurement that describes the strength of an MRI’s magnetic field. By comparison, most medical MRIs utilize magnets rated 1.5 to 3 Tesla or lower. A stronger magnet can show a finer and more detailed picture of brain structure and activity.

Because a magnet of this strength has never been used to map the human brain and body, CMRR researchers will spend the next five to 10 years developing technology to create images they can use.

Watch a time-lapse video of the 110-ton magnet’s installation.

Read more about the magnet and its journey from England, where it was made.

Watch a time-lapse video of the 110-ton magnet’s installation.

Read more about the magnet and its journey from England, where it was made.

Learn more about exciting Parkinson’s research in the Shake It Up Research News section.