From Alzheimer's to schizophrenia: SNM reveals latest MI/NM research at annual meeting

53rd annual meeting June 37 in San Diego centers on advances for understanding, diagnosing, treating diseases

RESTON, Va.--Researchers--covering the most recent advances in understanding, diagnosing and treating heart and brain diseases and cancer--release their findings in more than 1,600 scientific abstracts during SNM's 53rd Annual Meeting June 37 at the San Diego Convention Center.

More than 4,000 physicians, technologists, scientists and pharmacists will attend this meeting, the world's largest event for molecular imaging and nuclear medicine professionals. The educational and scientific program at the 53rd Annual Meeting is tailored to provide attendees with the most current and important information available in the field. SNM and SNMTS present about 100 continuing education courses focusing on PET/CT, cardiovascular nuclear medicine, brain imaging, pediatrics, oncology and therapy, thyroid cancer and radiation safety.

"Medical practitioners, technologists, scientists, physicists and pharmacists from around the world come to this premier scientific and educational event to discover just how far molecular imaging and nuclear medicine have pushed our understanding of human disease," said SNM President Peter S. Conti, professor of radiology, clinical pharmacy and biomedical engineering at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and director of the PET Imaging Science Center at USC's Keck School of Medicine. "From Alzheimer's to schizophrenia, from breast cancer to thyroid cancer, molecular imaging and nuclear medicine research have a proven record of leading to improvements in the diagnosis and treatment of life-threatening diseases that affect millions each year," added Conti, speaking on behalf of the society, which has more than 16,000 physician, technologist and scientist members in 78 countries.

"These are exciting times for all molecular imaging/nuclear medicine professionals, and SNM's Annual Meeting is the place to find the research, education, products and services essential to delivering the highest-quality patient care," said SNM Technologist Section President Valerie R. Cronin, director of imaging services in the Catholic Health System of Western New York in Buffalo. "At this meeting, imaging specialists will be able to explore coming opportunities and challenges as modern medicine technology advances," she added.

Here are some of this year's exceptional speakers.

    Simon R. Cherry, professor of biomedical engineering and director of the Center for Molecular and Genomic Imaging, both at the University of California, Davis, discusses "Of Mice and Men and Positrons: Advances in PET Imaging Technology" from 8:3010 a.m. on Sunday, June 4, during the annual Henry Wagner Lectureship.

    Alexander Gottschalk, a pioneer researcher and author who helped shape modern medical imaging, addresses "How to Interpret and Report the V/Q Scan in the Post PIOPED II Era" during the Cassen Lectureship on Monday, June 5. Gottschalk worked with the first clinically useful prototype Anger scintillation camera and performed the first dynamic camera studies of the brain and heart using technetium-99m.

    C.W. Metcalf, expert in stress management and adapting to change, reveals "Life Skills for the 21st Century" during the SNM Technologist Section's June 4 plenary session. Metcalf, the co-author of "Lighten Up: Survival Skills for People Under Pressure," overcame a less than 2 percent chance of recovery from brain surgeries.

    Henry N. Wagner Jr., director of the division of radiation health sciences at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md., will once again discuss what's on the horizon for the molecular imaging/nuclear medicine profession during his annual Highlights Lecture on Wednesday, June 7. In the Highlights Lecture, a 29-year tradition, Wagner summarizes current trends in molecular imaging/nuclear medicine and the meeting's significant findings in a 90-minute presentation. Wagner will also announce his pick for the annual Image of the Year, an image that illustrates a direction he sees nuclear medicine heading in a dynamic and ever-expanding field.

Typically, more than 1,600 scientific, technologist and technologist-student abstracts are presented featuring the latest research in the molecular imaging and nuclear medicine profession. Members of SNM's Radiopharmaceutical Sciences and Computer and Instrumentation councils will present two 90-minute basic science summary sessions highlighting the most important science. These sessions provide a summary of ongoing research and place them in context of the future of molecular imaging and nuclear medicine. A "Meet the Author" poster session will be divided into six 45-minute time slots June 46. This year, one session will provide a look at events in Chernobyl in the former USSR (now the Ukraine) on the 20th anniversary of that city's nuclear power accident.

On Saturday, June 3, 11 categorical seminars, developed by members of SNM's various councils and centers of excellence, will be presented. These include "Diagnosis and Management of Breast Cancer: Current Practice and New Frontiers," "Biomarkers in Central Nervous System," "Molecular Imaging and Therapy and the NIH Roadmap: Perspectives and Potential," "PET/CT in Oncology: Focus on the Referring Physician: What Does Your Referring Physician Want From PET/CT?" "PET/CT Scanners: What's Available and How They Work," "Expanding the Use of Nuclear Cardiology: Advances in Radionuclide Imaging and Integration with Other Developing Image Modalities," "Pediatric Oncology: From Bench to Bedside and Beyond," "New Horizons in Oncology and Neurology," "Opportunities and Challenges in Modern Medicine Technology," "PET/CT: An Atlas in Application in Technology" and "Cardiology: A Comprehensive Look at Nuclear Medicine Today."

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To register for the meeting, visit the SNM Web site at http://www.snm.org/am. Press registration is complimentary to credentialed media. For press registration only, contact Maryann Verrillo, at (703) 708-9000, ext. 1211, or mverrillo@snm.org. Press representatives may also register online at www.snm.org/am. SNM will hold a press conference from 11:30 a.m.1 p.m. on Monday, June 5, featuring an overview of the latest research and discoveries in the world of molecular imaging/nuclear medicine. New applications in oncology, neurology and cardiology will be discussed. Also at this press conference, Henry N. Wagner Jr., M.D., will announce his 2006 Image of the Year.

About SNM
SNM is holding its 53rd Annual Meeting June 37 at the San Diego Convention Center. Research topics for the 2006 meeting include molecular imaging and nuclear medicine advances for a broad spectrum of diseases. Educational sessions will focus on topics such as molecular imaging in clinical practice in the fight against cancer; imaging of inflammation in children; the role of diagnostic imaging in the management of metastatic bone disease; metabolic imaging for heart disease; neuroendocrine and brain imaging; and an examination of dementia, neurodegeneration, movement disorders and thyroid cancer.

SNM is an international scientific and professional organization of more than 16,000 members dedicated to promoting the science, technology and practical applications of molecular and nuclear imaging to diagnose, manage and treat diseases in women, men and children. Founded more than 50 years ago, SNM continues to train physicians, technologists, scientists, physicists, chemists and radiopharmacists in state-of-the-art imaging procedures and advances; provide essential resources for health care practitioners and patients; publish the most prominent peer-reviewed resource in the field; sponsor research grants, fellowships and awards; and host the premier annual meeting for medical imaging. SNM members have introduced--and continue to explore--biological and technological innovations in medicine that noninvasively investigate the molecular basis of diseases, benefiting countless generations of patients. SNM is based in Reston, Va.; additional information can be found online at http://www.snm.org.


Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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-- Robert Frost