Medical, high-energy physicists collaborate to improve PET scans

Physicists are developing new electronics for identifying subatomic particles in high-energy accelerators that may also enable radiologists to detect cancer at an earlier, more curable stage.

"The electronics needs in medical imaging look very closely related to the needs we have in high-energy physics," said Henry Frisch, Professor in Physics at the University of Chicago. "Physics tends to advance by new capabilities in measurement, the same in radiology."

Radiologists, medical physicists and high-energy physicists share a desire to more precisely measure the velocity and location of subatomic particles, Frisch explained. A significant improvement in Positron Emission Tomography technology could mean the difference between life and death for some patients, said Chin-Tu Chen, Associate Professor in Radiology at the University of Chicago.

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