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7 Tesla magnetic resonance imager at the DKFZ

The building which is home to the world’s first magnetic resonance imager with a magnetic field strength of 7 Tesla, which will exclusively be used for oncological investigations, was officially opened by Federal Research Minister Dr. Annette Schavan at the DKFZ in July 2008.

7-Tesla magnetic resonance imager (Photo: DKFZ)
The resolution of the magnetic resonance imager (MRI) is so good that it can visualise molecular structures. Siemens and the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ) have worked together for many years on this project, a cooperation that has now led to the new imager. Siemens has provided the cancer researchers from Heidelberg with a powerful magnetic resonance imager. In turn, the German Cancer Research Centre contributed a top-class building. In order to shield the strong magnetic field, tons of stainless steel were used in the construction and a solid concrete floor in the foundations stabilises the magnet, which weighs over 35 tons. Minister Schavan was very pleased with the effective cooperation between industry and science: “Under the German government’s high-tech strategy, we need such powerful partnerships in order to be able to transfer basic research results as quickly as possible into application.”

Dr. Bernd Montag, head of Imaging & IT at Siemens Healthcare added: “In Germany, every year more than 200,000 people die of cancer. The early diagnosis and effective treatment of this disease is no doubt one of the greatest challenges in medicine. Magnetic resonance imaging with 7-Tesla field strengths promises numerous new insights into the composition and biological behaviour of tumours. Working together with DKFZ researchers, we are hoping to further develop this promising technology in order for even more patients around the world to benefit from this technology in future.”

Professor Otmar D. Wiestler, Scientific Director of the German Cancer Research Centre, is also convinced of the effectiveness of the partners’ strategic alliance: “The close cooperation with Siemens helps us to secure the DKFZ’s top position in developing innovative diagnostic and radiotherapeutic methods for the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.” Also Siemens benefits from the cooperation, in that the intensive cooperation with basic researchers gives the company the possibility to transfer new findings into new devices, far more powerful than earlier models. “It is our aim to enable patients to benefit as soon as possible from our success in basic research. We hope that we will be able to put the first patient into the imager later this year,” said Professor Wiestler.

Soruce: DKFZ press release -18 July 2008
Website address: https://www.gesundheitsindustrie-bw.de/en/article/news/7-tesla-magnetic-resonance-imager-at-the-dkfz