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Research Highlights

  • Imaging the inner ear Image

    Research Highlight: Imaging the inner ear

    Posted on August 20, 2018
    Imaging the inner ear promises to be new gold standard for hearing researchers Sensorineural hearing loss, which is caused by damage to sensory cells and nerve fibers in the cochlea, is incredibly prevalent, verging on what Iyer terms an epidemic. About 466 million people, including 34 million children, around the world suffer from it, and there is no cure. At the CLS, Iyer and her colleagues are showing that synchrotron light produces the kind of high-quality images needed to distinguish between healthy and damaged sensory cells and nerve fibers without having to remove the cochlea from the temporal bone. Their results were published in the August edition of the journal Biomedical Optics Express.

  • Engineering 3D bio-printed scaffolds Image

    Research Highlight: Engineering 3D bio-printed scaffolds

    Posted on July 26, 2018
    Engineering 3D bio-printed scaffolds to help regenerate damaged peripheral nervous systems In the last decade or so, 3D printing has experienced a surge in popularity as the technology has become more precise and accessible. Now, researchers from the University of Saskatchewan are looking at how we can use 3D printing to help damaged nervous systems to regrow.

  • K-edge Subtraction Imaging of Barium and Strontium in Bone Image

    Research Highlight: K-edge Subtraction Imaging of Barium and Strontium in Bone

    Posted on June 07, 2018
    University of Saskatchewan researchers investigated skeletal uptake of barium and strontium, as tracers of bone turnover, in two different age groups, growing and skeletally mature, in healthy rats. 

  • Bubbles in Noodle Dough Image

    Research Highlight: Bubbles in Noodle Dough

    Posted on February 07, 2018
    A first look at how miniscule bubbles affect the texture of noodles The texture of a noodle is a remarkably complicated thing. When you bite into a spoonful of ramen noodles, you expect a bit of springiness (or a resistance to your bite) on the outside and a pleasantly soft give on the interior. These variations are so tiny as to be often overlooked, but they matter to noodle quality. A cross-disciplinary U of M team came together to examine these phenomena, harnessing the Canadian Light Source’s ability to quickly acquire detailed 3D images of solid and soft materials at the micron scale. Scanlon and Koksel provided expertise in how food processing affects the properties of various foods, as well as experience using the CLS facility. Physics professor John Page and post-doctoral fellow Reine-Marie Guillermic lent their expertise in ultrasonics, an acoustic technique used to evaluate dough properties, and their expertise in modelling the influence of bubbles on the ultrasonic signals. The team members took their dough to the BMIT beamline at the CLS, where they knew they would be able to get fast images with enough details to identify the bubbles as they evolved in the dough.

  • Imaging the Middle Ear Image

    Research Highlight: Imaging the Middle Ear

    Posted on January 02, 2018
    Bright light allows researchers to see bone as well as tissue Getting good images of the middle ear and all its parts is tricky. But it’s needed for scientists who want to do things like repair damage or make devices to help aging middle ears function better.  According to the Canadian Health Measures Survey, about 20 per cent of adults aged 19 to 79 years have at least mild hearing loss in at one or both ears, while close to 47 per cent of adults aged 60 to 79 years have some level of hearing loss. Damage to the middle ear is a common contributor to hearing loss. “The CLS let us successfully image both the bone and soft tissue,” he said. Now, work can start on designing and building better implants and prostheses to help with hearing problems related to the middle ear.

  • Advancing CF Research Image

    Research Highlight: Advancing CF Research

    Posted on October 05, 2017
    Cystic fibrosis scientists discover abnormal response to lung infections Juan Ianowski, associate professor in the Department of Physiology at the University of Saskatchewan, and a team of 18 researchers have concluded that the genetic mutation that causes cystic fibrosis prevents normal secretion of airway surface liquid including mucus. Using a new imaging technique they developed at the Canadian Light Source, they determined that the production of airway surface liquid in response to bacteria is abnormal, and might lead to a cascade of infection and inflammation in lungs as the incurable disease progresses.

  • Regenerating Heart Muscle Image

    Research Highlight: Regenerating Heart Muscle

    Posted on September 13, 2017
    Scientist combines medicine and engineering to repair a damaged heart Regenerating heart muscle tissue using a 3D printer – once the stuff of Star Trek science fiction – now appears to be firmly in the realm of the possible. U of S researcher Mohammad Izadifar says he is combining medicine and engineering to develop ways to repair a damaged heart. “The problem is the heart cannot repair itself once it is damaged due to a heart attack.” he explained. Izadifar has conducted his research out of three places on campus – the College of Engineering, the CLS and the College of Medicine where he has been certified in doing open heart surgery on rats, having trained in all the ethical protocols related to these research animals. And thanks to the confirmation photo images he has from his collaboration with the CLS, Izadifar has already proven the 3D printed human cells, which he has dubbed the “heart patch,” can start to grow as intended in theory.

  • Studying model suspensions using high resolution synchrotron X-ray CT Image

    Research Highlight: Studying model suspensions using high resolution synchrotron X-ray CT

    Posted on April 14, 2016
    OIl and Water  Researchers from the University of Sheffield used synchrotron X-ray CT to examine the fate of a water droplet in a suspension of sucrose and oil. 

  • Non-destructive investigation of soft tissue preservation in amber Image

    Research Highlight: Non-destructive investigation of soft tissue preservation in amber

    Posted on March 31, 2016
    Preserved in Amber The plot of movies, soft tissue can be preserved in amber for many years. Palaeontologists from the Royal Saskatchewan Museum are investigating soft tissue preservation of insects trapped within amber. The team has examined beetles, ants and wasps that range from 17 to 98 million years old in age. 

  • Improving Cochlear Implant Surgery Image

    Research Highlight: Improving Cochlear Implant Surgery

    Posted on February 18, 2016
    For a better sounding world A collaboration between Western University and the CLS to construct a high definition atlas of intracochlear anatomy using in-line phase contrast micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) imaging. The atlas will be used as a guide to design safer electrodes, to guide surgical insertion, and to optimize hearing outcomes.

  • Energy Dispersive Biomedical Imaging System Image

    Research Highlight: Energy Dispersive Biomedical Imaging System

    Posted on November 30, 2015
    One beam with two K-edges! Development has been done a multi-enegy X-ray imaging system using a novel bent Laue crstal system. The focused beam hits the sample and then spreads out before reaching the detector. This results in an image where the horizontal relates to energy.

  • Growth and hunting behaviour of hatchling Tyrannosaurus rex Image

    Research Highlight: Growth and hunting behaviour of hatchling Tyrannosaurus rex

    Posted on September 08, 2015
    Life of a baby dinosaur revealed Imaging of bones from young T.rex reveals insights into the lives of a hatchling (less than one year old) and a 3-4 year old T. rex the size of an adult human.  The hatching was growing as fast as a baby bird and both were hunting prey showing the vigorous activity of youth.

  • In-line Phase-Contrast Microcomputed Tomography Image

    Research Highlight: In-line Phase-Contrast Microcomputed Tomography

    Posted on July 29, 2015
    New Application for In vivo Imaging of Cortical Bone Remodeling of the Rat Forelimb In-line phase contrast was used to image cortical bone. Reducing the dose permits longitudinal imaging of live animals which provides direct and novel in vivo evidence of BMU behavior in 3D. Further development of such methodology promises to advance our understanding of fundamental bone biology which will enhance the efficacy of drug and physiological therapies for degenerative diseases such as osteoporosis.

  • Visualizing degradation of 3D-printed tissue-engineered constructs Image

    Research Highlight: Visualizing degradation of 3D-printed tissue-engineered constructs

    Posted on June 30, 2015
    Using 3D printing to help grow new cartilage We employ 3d-printed hybrid biomaterials made of polycaprolactone (PCL) for structural support and cell-impregnated alginate hydrogels for biological functionality. Imaging is done using in-line phase contrast imaging computed tomography (in-line PCI-CT).

  • Phase Contrast Imaging (PCI) enabling agricultural innovation Image

    Research Highlight: Phase Contrast Imaging (PCI) enabling agricultural innovation

    Posted on May 29, 2015
    An X-ray for plants!  The team has developed a novel method of utilizing phase contrast imaging to identify plant structures. This is useful for studying the progression of disease, transport of minerals and water, and developmental biology.

  • Investigating preservation of amber inclusions with x-ray µCT and soft x-rays Image

    Research Highlight: Investigating preservation of amber inclusions with x-ray µCT and soft x-rays

    Posted on April 17, 2015
    Frozen in time The team is investigating inclusions within amber deposits that are 17 to 100 million years old. The goal is to assess how preservation varies between deposits of different age and source tree. 

  • Phase-Based X-Ray Imaging Techniques for Cartilage Tissue Engineering Assessments in Situ Image

    Research Highlight: Phase-Based X-Ray Imaging Techniques for Cartilage Tissue Engineering Assessments in Situ

    Posted on March 31, 2015
    Repairing nerves and cartilage The tissue engineering team at the University of Saskatchewan is working on artificial tissue which will allow for the repair of cartilage and nerve tissue. 

  • Healthy Bees Image

    Research Highlight: Healthy Bees

    Posted on January 31, 2015
    How fungus changes bees High school students from Quebec visited BMIT to image honey bees- comparing healthy bees to those infected by a fungus which targets Canadian honey bees. 

  • Assessing the Gas Transfer between Air and Blood Using Multi-Energy High Resolution Imaging Image

    Research Highlight: Assessing the Gas Transfer between Air and Blood Using Multi-Energy High Resolution Imaging

    Posted on May 31, 2014
    How diseased lungs are different The Ford group likes to watch rats breathe, comparing the relationship between airways and blood vessels in rats with pulmonary diseases.

  • Thermoregulation in the Blood-Feeding Insect Rhodnius Prolixus, the Vector of Chagas’ disease Image

    Research Highlight: Thermoregulation in the Blood-Feeding Insect Rhodnius Prolixus, the Vector of Chagas’ disease

    Posted on April 30, 2014
    Helping prevent the spread of disease Researchers from Saskatchewan and France are learning about how this insect pumps our hot blood through its cold body without dying. Understanding the mechanism with which the insect pumps our blood will help us combat its nefarious disease-spreading activities. 

  • Beam Expander Update Image

    Research Highlight: Beam Expander Update

    Posted on February 28, 2014
    BMIT- bigger and better With much ingenuity, the available height of a BMIT image has been increased tenfold without ANY loss of flux or phase coherence. George almost died.

  • Fangtooth- Deep Sea Fish Skeleton Image

    Research Highlight: Fangtooth- Deep Sea Fish Skeleton

    Posted on January 31, 2014
    Fangtooth helps in determination of oceanic pollutants A group of high school students from Montreal scanned our fanged friend to figure out whether it harbours significant levels of various pollutants, which would suggest that we humans have managed to spread our waste pretty much everywhere on earth.

  • DEI Breath Hold Imaging Of Mouse Lungs Image

    Research Highlight: DEI Breath Hold Imaging Of Mouse Lungs

    Posted on November 30, 2013
    Helping animals breathe Software has been developed for imaging the lungs of live animals with synchrotron radiation. The software can be used to take pictures of the lungs at animals' maximum and minimum lung capacities, then to subtract the images from one another to see the difference. Seeing the difference between the maximum and minimum images while the animals are still alive allows researchers to better understand lung diseases and animals' responses to various treatments.

  • Grating Based Talbot Interferometer Imaging Image

    Research Highlight: Grating Based Talbot Interferometer Imaging

    Posted on October 31, 2013
    We’re working on it It should be ready for users by July 2014.

  • Beam Expander Image

    Research Highlight: Beam Expander

    Posted on September 30, 2013
    BMIT can image giants Using a double bent Laue beam expander, a mouse can now be imaged laterally in a single shot.

  • One Beam With Two K-Edges! Image

    Research Highlight: One Beam With Two K-Edges!

    Posted on August 31, 2013
    BMIT innovation Usually, if you have squares and circles in a sample, you have no choice but to look at an image which includes both the squares and the circles (superimposed upon one another- making it difficult to see anything useful). With two K-edges, you can have two completely different images- one with only squares, and one with only circles.   

  • Soft Tissue Imaging Of the Temporomandibular Joint  Image

    Research Highlight: Soft Tissue Imaging Of the Temporomandibular Joint

    Posted on July 31, 2013
    Helping diagnose arthritis of the jaw  Using standard hospital equipment, arthritis of the jaw can’t be detected until it’s too late... BMIT can help.

  • Synchrotron Imaging Of the Spatial Distribution of Barium in Bone to Understand the Role of Remodeling In Bone Disease  Image

    Research Highlight: Synchrotron Imaging Of the Spatial Distribution of Barium in Bone to Understand the Role of Remodeling In Bone Disease

    Posted on June 30, 2013
    Your body treats your bones the way a kid treats Lego Your bones are constantly being destroyed and replaced by your body. One research team is using BMIT to figure out exactly how that process of destructive creation is affected by diseases like osteoporosis.

  • Rapid Bubble Dynamics in Soft Solids  Image

    Research Highlight: Rapid Bubble Dynamics in Soft Solids

    Posted on May 31, 2013
    The quest for the perfect loaf of bread Imaging techniques at BMIT are helping refine the standard industrial bread-baking quality assurance ultrasound technologies which are currently in use.

  • Novel Method of Dual-Energy X-Ray Analysis Image

    Research Highlight: Novel Method of Dual-Energy X-Ray Analysis

    Posted on April 30, 2013
    Innovation at BMIT Dr. Midgley has been investigating DEXA for use in the characterisation of materials, with applications in analytical x-ray science- including medical imaging, radiotherapy treatment planning, and industrial nondestructive testing. 

  • Canine and Human Prostate Synchrotron Imaging  Image

    Research Highlight: Canine and Human Prostate Synchrotron Imaging

    Posted on March 31, 2013
    Prostate cancer kills- but it doesn’t have to Caught early, prostate cancer is highly curable. The problem is catching it early. Using BMIT, a University of Saskatchewan research team is studying prostate cancer in dogs in an effort to apply what they learn to increasing the ability of currently available hospital technology to diagnose prostate cancer at an earlier stage.

  • Exploring Paleopathology from the Inside Out: A Synchrotron Investigation of Dental Pathology and Trauma Image

    Research Highlight: Exploring Paleopathology from the Inside Out: A Synchrotron Investigation of Dental Pathology and Trauma

    Posted on February 28, 2013
    Point taken: An unusual case of incisor agenesis and mandibular trauma in Early Bronze Age Siberia Synchrotron imaging was used to diagnose two unusual but unrelated conditions. The first is one of the earliest cases involving dental agenesis, the failure of two front teeth to develop. The second, the embedded projectile tip, represents an almost certain deliberate assault that occurred at or around the time of death.

  • Phase Grating Talbot Interferometry Imaging of Nephila Clavata (Tetragnathidae) Image

    Research Highlight: Phase Grating Talbot Interferometry Imaging of Nephila Clavata (Tetragnathidae)

    Posted on December 31, 2012
    Spider Queen While imaging at SPRING-8, staff from BMIT were inspired to develop grating based Talbot interferometry.

  • Precision Bending of Silicon Wafers for Bent Crystal Monochromators Image

    Research Highlight: Precision Bending of Silicon Wafers for Bent Crystal Monochromators

    Posted on November 30, 2012
    High quality mono beam for less Improving bent crystal monochromators and studying the utility of silicon wafers as bent crystal optic components.

  • Tissue Engineering Research Group Image

    Research Highlight: Tissue Engineering Research Group

    Posted on October 31, 2012
    Replacement body parts for all BMIT allows non-invasive monitoring of how well implanted tissue performs, and exactly where the implants are and/or are not healing.

  • “Lighting” Up the Lungs Image

    Research Highlight: “Lighting” Up the Lungs

    Posted on September 30, 2012
    Development of lung imaging The goal of this work is to develop synchrotron based imaging protocols suitable for live animal imaging and for functional evaluation and measurement of gross changes in the lungs.

  • X-Ray Coherent Scatter Imaging Image

    Research Highlight: X-Ray Coherent Scatter Imaging

    Posted on August 31, 2012
    Extracting information from "random" scatter X-ray scatter imaging uses the scattered radiation to augment conventional X-ray imaging. 

  • Cellular Response to Microbeam Radiation Therapy (MRT) Image

    Research Highlight: Cellular Response to Microbeam Radiation Therapy (MRT)

    Posted on July 31, 2012
    A precise radiation beam for cancer elimination A scientist from the University of Alberta is developing a method for using BMIT’s beam to kill cancerous tissue without harming the surrounding healthy tissue.

  • Non-Invasive Estimation of Bone Strength Image

    Research Highlight: Non-Invasive Estimation of Bone Strength

    Posted on June 30, 2012
    Do the pores in your bones bode ill for your future? Dr. Boyd and his team may be able to tell you.

  • Synchrotron Imaging Of Human Ovaries ex Situ Image

    Research Highlight: Synchrotron Imaging Of Human Ovaries ex Situ

    Posted on May 31, 2012
    The business of helping life come into this world is both messy and beautiful Improving soft tissue imaging, understanding ovarian cancer, and figuring the mechanisms through which infertility may occur.

  • The Role of Staphylococcus Aureus on Mucus Secretion Image

    Research Highlight: The Role of Staphylococcus Aureus on Mucus Secretion

    Posted on April 30, 2012
    How cystic fibrosis affects the mucus protecting us from pulmonary infection. Response of the airway submucosal gland to inhaled bacteria with and without cystic fibrosis.

  • SYNC 801 Image

    Research Highlight: SYNC 801

    Posted on March 31, 2012
    A class about the application of synchrotron radiation to problems in the life sciences Covering the history of synchrotron light, interactions of light with matter, macromolecular crystallography, biomedical imaging, x-ray absorption imaging, and x-ray flurorescence imaging.

  • In-situ 3D Investigation of Metallic Materials’ Failure Mechanisms Image

    Research Highlight: In-situ 3D Investigation of Metallic Materials’ Failure Mechanisms

    Posted on February 29, 2012
    Measuring failure The bright x-rays of BMIT have allowed the Szpunar group to observe the failure of various materials at the micron level.

  • 3D Mapping Of Strontium in Bone Image

    Research Highlight: 3D Mapping Of Strontium in Bone

    Posted on January 31, 2012
    Strontium bone-strength supplements? We don't know exactly how useful strontium supplements are, but researchers are in the process of figuring it out. They feed rats strontium, and then watch how concentrations of the element in the rats' bones change over the rats' lives using micro Computed Tomography (uCT) and K-Edge Subtraction (KES) techniques.

  • Human Factors Design for the BMIT Biomedical Beamlines Image

    Research Highlight: Human Factors Design for the BMIT Biomedical Beamlines

    Posted on January 01, 2012
    BMIT designed for ease of use At the BMIT beamlines, human factors considerations have been incorporated wherever possible, including in the design of software and hardware, as well as ease-of-use features of beamline control stations and experiment hutches. BMIT gears operation of the beamline to our unique user community of medical personnel, in addition to basic science researchers. User feedback continues to drive usability improvements to beamline operation.

  • High Resolution a-Selenium (a-Se) X-Ray Detectors for Digital Mammography Image

    Research Highlight: High Resolution a-Selenium (a-Se) X-Ray Detectors for Digital Mammography

    Posted on November 30, 2011
    Towards higher resolution mammography A prototype detector was tested in the development of high resolution detectors for digital mammography.

  • Radiation Detectors for Micro-Beam Radiation Therapy Image

    Research Highlight: Radiation Detectors for Micro-Beam Radiation Therapy

    Posted on October 31, 2011
    Precision dose measurements for radiation therapy The measurement of spatially resolved high doses in micro-beam radiation therapy is a challenging task requiring the combination of high dose response and high spatial resolution.

  • Insect Flight Muscle Phase Polymorphism Image

    Research Highlight: Insect Flight Muscle Phase Polymorphism

    Posted on September 30, 2011
    Why are some locusts so lonesome? A research group at the University of Saskatchewan is using BMIT to develop an understanding of how the exoskeletons of two different groups within the same species of locust constrain the development of their flight muscles.  

  • DEI Imaging of Growing and Inflamed Joints Image

    Research Highlight: DEI Imaging of Growing and Inflamed Joints

    Posted on August 31, 2011
    Fighting early-onset arthritis The Rosenberg group is breaking new ground in the study of joint disease.

  • Investigating Clinical Applications of Synchrotron Imaging In Veterinary Medicine Image

    Research Highlight: Investigating Clinical Applications of Synchrotron Imaging In Veterinary Medicine

    Posted on July 31, 2011
    Longitudinal survival studies with large animals The Sharma group is using BMIT for comparative analysis, surgical planning, live animal imaging, and building 3D teaching models.

  • Microfluidic and Nanofluidic Transport Phenomena Image

    Research Highlight: Microfluidic and Nanofluidic Transport Phenomena

    Posted on June 30, 2011
    Understanding fluid flow at the micro- and nano-scale Measuring the behaviour of liquid water in a fuel cell provides new insights into the function of fuel cells and may lead to improvements in materials and design for low temperature fuel cells.

  • Measuring the Biomechanics of Normal and Pathological Joints Image

    Research Highlight: Measuring the Biomechanics of Normal and Pathological Joints

    Posted on May 31, 2011
    High resolution imaging of joints Dr. Wilson's group is helping improve diagnoses of joint problems by conducting stress analyses in the BMIT beam.

  • Imaging Embryonic Tooth Development in Mouse Image

    Research Highlight: Imaging Embryonic Tooth Development in Mouse

    Posted on April 30, 2011
    The teeth of mice and men Studying how teeth and jaws develop in a coordinated way over time.

  • High Resolution 3D Imaging of Cortical Bone Image

    Research Highlight: High Resolution 3D Imaging of Cortical Bone

    Posted on March 31, 2011
    The dynamic microstructure of cortical bone Growth and development, functional adaptation, and deterioration with age and disease.

  • Options for Computed Tomography X-ray Imaging on BMIT Image

    Research Highlight: Options for Computed Tomography X-ray Imaging on BMIT

    Posted on January 01, 2010
    Summary of BMIT's current CT capabilities An overview of recent CT X-ray imaging studies of human and animal specimens conducted on the BMIT bending magnet (05B1-1) beamline is presented. Imaging was done at 20 keV, using a double crystal monochromator with a (2,2,0) silicon crystal set with ΔE/E ~ 10-5.

  • 05ID-2: Superconductive Wiggler for BMIT Program Image

    Research Highlight: 05ID-2: Superconductive Wiggler for BMIT Program

    Posted on January 01, 2008
    Optimized vertical field direction wiggler A wide variety of imaging and therapy experiments planned for BMIT facility require a unique radiation source with high brilliance, critical energy and a wide beam fan. An optimized, vertical field direction wiggler was designed and fabricated to provide 4.3 Tesla with a period length of 48 mm, critical energy range > 20keV, K-value > 19, stored energy of 27 kJ, inductance of 0.2 H and a pole gap of 14.5 mm.

  • POE-2 Gas Bremsstrahlung Studies on 05ID-2 Beamline Image

    Research Highlight: POE-2 Gas Bremsstrahlung Studies on 05ID-2 Beamline

    Posted on January 01, 2007
    Getting rid of gas radiation The BioMedical Imaging and Therapy (BMIT) ID beamline will be capable ofhuman research for both imaging and therapy applications. In preparation forthose programs, a study was undertaken designed to minimize and characterizeradiation from other sources than synchrotron radiation; i.e. gas bremsstrahlung.Gas bremsstrahlung is generated by the interaction of circulating electrons withthe residual gas molecules in the ring vacuum chamber and is produced all aroundthe storage ring.

  • BMIT "MRT Lift" - A positioning system for biomedical imaging and therapy Image

    Research Highlight: BMIT "MRT Lift" - A positioning system for biomedical imaging and therapy

    Posted on January 01, 2007
    Bigger and better The MRT lift is capable of moving and lifting samples and patients larger than any previous synchrotron biomedical positioning system. 

  • The Proposed BioMedical Imaging & Therapy Program Image

    Research Highlight: The Proposed BioMedical Imaging & Therapy Program

    Posted on January 01, 2005
    A healing light for research Designed for the purpose of imaging biological tissue and conducting radiation therapy using brilliant, monochromatic x-ray light.

  • Preliminary study and Mechanical support design of Analyzer for Diffraction Enhanced Imaging Image

    Research Highlight: Preliminary study and Mechanical support design of Analyzer for Diffraction Enhanced Imaging

    Posted on January 01, 2005
    Solving problems which plague DEI Problems with the angle of the analyzer may be solved by a stiffer mechanical design.