Positron emission tomography (PET) is a functional three dimensional imaging technique based on detection of photons originating from the destruction of emitted positrons with electrons from surrounding tissue. The imaging system produces a three-dimensional image of functional processes in the body. PET involves labeling of biomolecules with positron emitters also known as neutron deficient nuclei. As such, the whole body distribution of positron-emitting biomarkers in the whole body can be imaged with high sensitivity with the use of PET imaging system. Three-dimensional images of tracer concentration within the body are then constructed by computer analysis making PET imaging ideal for understanding biological events and biodistribution of radio labeled drugs non-invasively in animals. Though medical imaging is dominated by anatomical imaging such as X-ray, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and ultrasound (US), functional imaging modalities including positron emission tomography (PET) have been demonstrated to be of particular value in a number of disease staging and follow-up regimens. Positron Emission Tomography (PET) uses short-lived radionuclides to produce high definition 3D images of functional processes in vivo.
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The global PET imaging systems market can be segmented based on the modality type, application and geography. Modality type segment include single modality and multi modality imaging. Single modality includes use of solely PET detector while multiple modalities allow use of dual type detectors in combinations such as PET/CT, and MR/PE for hybrid imaging. PET imaging systems are widely used as diagnostic tool in clinical oncology, neurology, and cardiology. IT is also used as a research tool in mapping brain and heart function as well as in drug development.
Technical evolution such as introduction of integrated imaging systems leading to medical revolution is the major driver for the growth of this market worldwide. Apart from its importance in diagnosis, PET also has a significant role in assessing the response to therapy, especially, cancer therapy. However, the high cost of cyclotrons needed to produce the short-lived radionuclide for PET scanning and the need for specially adapted on-site chemical synthesis apparatus to produce the radiopharmaceuticals after radioisotope preparation may pose a challenge to the wide spread application of PET imaging systems. PET functional imaging strength lies in imaging disease processes. The integrated systems allow radiologists to combine the clear anatomical images created by CT or MRI with the functional images of generated by PET/SPECT.
Redefining the use of PET imaging system with the help of multimodal platform helps pre-clinical studies to offer quantitative results. This enables to obtain more data per animal, and reduction in the preclinical imaging costs. The main advantages of multi modal platform such as combined PET/CT help obtain functional and anatomical information from PET and CT, for local and whole-body examinations respectively. Secondly, integration of anatomical and functional modalities also help in significant reduction of overall examination time in addition to limiting noise propagation from measured attenuation correction.
Some of the key players contributing to the global PET imaging systems market include Perkin Elmer, Sofie Biosciences, Bruker Corporation, Philips Healthcare, Positron Corporation, Siemens Healthcare and GE Healthcare. PerkinElmer has partnered with Sofie Biosciences, a developer of the G-series platform which offers multimodal suite of PET/X-Ray or PET/CT combinations. This portfolio is known to revolutionize the small animal PET field with significantly higher speed and sensitivity in a compact bench top format.