Greetings from R. Mark Henkelman
Director, Mouse Imaging Centre (MICe)
With completion of the human genome, a major outstanding question in biomedical research is the relationship between genes and normal development or disease. Over this century, much of this will be worked out using mouse models of human diseases, because the genes and their function in the mouse are very similar to the human.
When we look for human diseases in the human population, we make extensive use of medical imaging. Therefore, it makes sense to have available the same imaging capabilities as we investigate mice for models of human disease.
The Mouse Imaging Centre (MICe) has developed high field magnetic resonance imaging microscopy, ultrasound biomicroscopy, micro computed tomography, and optical techniques. With these imaging tools, MICe is screening randomly mutagenized mice to look for phenotypes that represent human diseases and is taking established human disease models in mice and using imaging to follow the progression of disease and response to treatment over time. It is clear that imaging has a major contribution to make to phenotyping genetic variants and to characterizing mouse models.
MICe is staffed by an exciting new team of about 30 investigators with expertise in imaging techniques, computer science, engineering, imaging processing, developmental biology and mouse pathology.