Preclinical Imaging Facility

Preclinical Imaging Facility

At the Innovation Centre's world-class Preclinical Imaging Facility, non-invasive in vivo techniques enable the study of animal models over time. The combination of structural and functional imaging with metabolic and physiological imaging is crucial for observing changes to organs, tissues, or cells.

PET-MRI technology is used to comprehensively assess the heart in conditions such as cardiomyopathy, congenital heart disease, heart transplants, heart failure and myocardial-infarction cardiac damage.

Scientists study the processes that determine the health of a heart and of the blood vessels to discover how heart disease develops and progresses while enabling us to monitor the effectiveness of new treatments.

7T PET-MRI and a Vevo3100

Based at the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, the Preclinical Imaging Facility features a 7T PET-MRI and a Vevo3100.


The PET-MRI is a PET system coupled with a cryogen-free, high-field (7T) MRI enabling simultaneous PET and MR imaging data acquisition, representing the very latest innovation in preclinical imaging.

Pre Clinical Imaging Facility Innovation Centre

PET-MRI at the Preclinical Imaging Facility Sydney

Beating Heart Mri Image

PET-MRI heart

The positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) PET-MRI scanner reveals disease progression and associated changes, allowing scientists to determine specific biological processes. This state-of-the-art system is adaptable for a wide range of applications from flow measurements and 4D in vivo imaging to high-resolution analysis of clinical samples.


Vevo3100 is a state-of-the-art high-frequency ultrasound imaging system that can perform echocardiography in small animal such as rodents and zebrafish in real-time to provide cardiac structure and function. Animal physiology such as ECG, heart rate, respiratory rate and body temperature can be monitor during imaging. The instrument can be used for multiple applications include cardiology, vascular biology, developmental biology, drug discovery and development.

Dr Celine Santiago using the Vevo3100

Funded by the NSW Government, The Preclinical Imaging Facility complements the Micro Imaging Facility, the Metabolomics Facility, the Stem Cell Facility and the Clinical Imaging Facility for a consolidated approach to cardiovascular health and disease.


Dr Nana Sunn
Head, Preclinical Imaging Facility

Acknowledgement of Country

The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders past and present.

Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute - The Home of Heart Research for 30 Years