Press release: Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore to install MILabs Adaptive PET/SPECT/CT in order to enhance its Translational and Molecular Imaging Capabilities


The Laboratory for Translational and Molecular Imaging (LTMI) at the Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore will install a MILabs VECTor4CT system located inside their specific pathogen free – SPF – barrier facility. A major thrust of LTMI is to develop in vivo molecular imaging agents to study cancer biology, inflammation, infection, and brain and immune function, with an Asian disease-centric focus. Current research projects are supported by funding from the Singapore National Research Foundation, Singapore National Medical Research Council, and a number of industrial partners.

The proximity to Singapore General Hospital, the National Cancer Centre Singapore and other medical research centres, gives Duke-NUS LTMI the unique advantage of being ideally located to encourage collaboration between biomedical sciences, translational research, and clinical applications.

The head of LTMI is Dr. Ann-Marie Chacko, an Assistant Professor in the Duke-NUS Cancer and Stem Cell Biology Programme, and an Adjunct Faculty with the SingHealth Nuclear Medicine Residency Programme. The installation of the VECTor4CT at Duke-NUS solidifies her vision to establish LTMI as a core facility for Duke-NUS researchers, and as a resource accessible to the broader Singapore research community, from other academic institutes to industry groups. LTMI will drive emerging imaging and technology research, including PET/CT and SPECT/CT, and drug development through contract work and collaborations.

According to Dr. Chacko, the ability of the system to perform simultaneous PET and SPECT of co-injected tracers combined with fast dynamic acquisitions, are key differentiating performance characteristics that will enable researchers to expand the scope and breadth of translational imaging applications.

It is anticipated that these innovative molecular imaging capabilities will bring significant benefits to Duke-NUS researchers, and the broader Singapore community, across the spectrum of diseases.


About Duke-NUS Medical School

The Duke-NUS Medical School (Duke-NUS) was established in 2005 as a strategic collaboration between the Duke University School of Medicine, located in North Carolina, USA, and the National University of Singapore (NUS). Duke-NUS offers a graduate-entry, 4-year MD (Doctor of Medicine) training programme based on the unique Duke model of education, with one year dedicated to independent study and research projects of a basic science or clinical nature. Duke-NUS also offers MD/PhD and PhD programmes. Duke-NUS has five Signature Research Programmes: Cancer and Stem Cell Biology, Neuroscience and Behavioural Disorders, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Cardiovascular and Metabolic Disorders, and Health Services and Systems Research.

Duke-NUS and SingHealth have established a strategic partnership in academic medicine that will guide and promote the future of medicine, tapping on and combining the collective strengths of SingHealth’s clinical expertise and Duke-NUS’ biomedical sciences research and medical education capabilities.

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About MILabs

MILabs provides high-end molecular imaging solutions for biomedical and pharmaceutical research. Today these systems contribute worldwide to the development of new diagnostic solutions and therapies for diseases such as diabetes, cancer, cardiac and neurodegenerative diseases. As documented in over hundreds of scientific articles, U-SPECT4 provides the fastest, most sensitive and highest resolution small-animal SPECT system currently available. Recently MILabs fused state-of-the-art Adaptive PET with its SPECT technology by introducing VECTor4CT. This versatile nuclear imaging system is extremely user friendly, fully integrated and enables simultaneous ultra-high resolution PET/SPECT imaging in combination with a choice of in-line low-dose high-resolution CT subsystems. For more information, visit