New SNSF-project funded


Dr. Francesco Santini, senior researcher at the Division of Radiological Physics, University Hospital Basel, and the Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Basel, attracted a SNF project on the “Development and Clinical Validation of Magnetic Resonance Methods for the Functional Imaging and Spectroscopy of Skeletal Muscles by Means of Synchronized Electrical Muscle Stimulation”. Congratulations to this achievement and success! The project aims to develop and validate a set of methods for the investigation of the skeletal muscles with Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Assessing the function of the muscles in MRI is challenging because standard setups include motion by voluntary input and therefore the acquisition cannot be easily synchronized with the movement, and the movement itself is not easily repeatable. Dr. Santini’s approach, within the group of Prof. Oliver Bieri and with partners of the University Children’s Hospital Basel and the Department of Prevention and Sport Medicine, uses electrical muscle stimulation to induce repeatable movements, to which the MR acquisition can be synchronized, similarly to cardiac MR imaging. The project will utilize this basic approach to acquire dynamic images of the muscle contraction and to derive quantitative parameters; similarly, it will be used to acquire information on muscle metabolism by means of MR spectroscopy. The goal of Dr. Santini and his colleagues is to develop a set of tools that can evaluate the physical status of the skeletal muscles and apply them to healthy volunteers, competitive athletes and patients suffering from muscular dystrophies. Further enquiries can be addressed to