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New MRI Advances Care and
College’s Research Mission


MU College of Veterinary Medicine Dean Neil C. Olson cuts the yellow ribbon held by members of the Columbia Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors to celebrate the opening of the college’s new Magnetic Resonance Imaging facility.

A look at the new 3T MRI.

John Dodam, DVM, PhD, chairman of the college’s Department of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (left), discusses the new MRI with MU Interim Provost Ken Dean, a member of the Columbia Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors, and CVM Dean Neil C. Olson.

Diagnostic and research capabilities took a leap forward at the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine May 29 with the launching of a new 3T Magnetic Resonance Imaging machine. The college held a ribbon cutting for the device and the facility housing it at the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.

CVM Dean Neil C. Olson, DVM, PhD, told the group gathered for the event that a great veterinary college needs not only top-notch faculty, students and staff, but also up-to-date facilities and equipment. He noted that with the addition of the new MRI to the college’s existing imaging capabilities, which include positron emission tomography (PET), computed tomography (CT ), and superior digital radiography, MU becomes one of only a few veterinary schools in the country with such advanced technology available.

The new MRI replaced an old system that was built in 1997 and housed in a trailer outside of the veterinary teaching hospital. The new equipment is faster, reducing the time needed for animals to be anesthetized, and provides improved anatomic detail of soft tissue. Another improvement is that the 3T MRI is housed in a custom-designed addition to the veterinary hospital. This new facility allows access for larger animals, such as horses whose limbs are particularly susceptible to injury, said VMTH Director and Professor of Equine Surgery David Wilson, DVM.

Improved and expanded patient care is not the only benefit of the new facility and equipment, Olson said. The ability to image larger animals also advances the college’s research ability. The 3T MRI is also the only such magnet in Missouri that will be available not only to researchers throughout MU, but also to investigators from other academic institutions and animal health companies. This access is expected to facilitate partnerships, advance scientific investigation and serve as an economic development tool for the college. MU Interim Provost Ken Dean also spoke during the ribbon cutting and said that it is also a tool that will attract faculty to the campus.

The college acquired the 3T MRI though a partnership with Toshiba, which upgraded the system‘s technology in exchange for the CVM sharing imaging research with the company.

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Last Update: June 2, 2014