UCL Institute of Cardiovascular Science


Animal imaging

Animal imaging


The UCL Centre for Advanced Biomedical Imaging (CABI) is a new multidisciplinary research centre for focused on experimental imaging. The Centre houses a state-of-the-art BHF 9.4T MRI system, a new photoacoustic imaging facility, in-vivo confocal endoscopy, ultrasound, bioluminescence and fluorescence imaging, as well as SPECT/CT.

Our goals are to establish an integrated strategy for the development and application of novel in- vivo cardiac imaging technologies aimed at further understanding the mechanisms of disease in order to develop new therapeutic strategies. Furthermore, we aim to deliver a multimodal imaging programme to investigate the molecular, functional, and structural consequences of the disease process on a range of different scales.

Key research activities

Preclinical cardiac imaging is technically challenging as the heart is literally a moving target. Beating 10 times faster than the human heart, we can now capture a mouse heart beat in a fraction of a second using our state-of-the-art MRI system funded by the British Heart Foundation. These ultrafast techniques are used to generate information about cardiac structure, function, tissue health and cellular viability. In collaboration with Mark Pepys, Paul Riley, Derek Hausenloy, we are using our high-speed imaging techniques and novel forms of image contrast to study life-threatening diseases such as amyloidosis and heart attacks. Our aim is to use a cross-disciplinary approach to tackle heart disease, which remains the leading cause of death in the developed world.

For a selection of preclinical imaging methods see: Price AN et al. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging in experimental models. Open Cardiovasc Med J. 2010 Nov 26;4:278-92.

Cardiac Embryo Phenotyping
Nanomedicine: Magnetic Targeting of Stem Cells
Assessment of Myocardial Infarction
Cellular Therapies - Tracking of Stem Cells
Imaging Myocardial Blood Flow