The WSIC is currently equipped with two small animal PET scanners, that allow in vivo investigations in the millimeter range and absolute quantification of the acquired data. Both systems contain a 57Co source to enable the acquisition of transmission data to correct the emission data for attenuation. In addition, the systems allow the monitoring of physiological parameters, such as heart and breathing rates. PET also play a siginficant role in receptor imaging and quantification as well as kinetic modelling of tracer uptake in various organs especially tumors, the heart or brain. The small patients will be scanned under deep anaesthesia either with isoflurane or any kind of injection anaesthetic to prevent stress for the animals and to avoid movement artifacts during the scan.

Non-invasive in vivo positron emission tomography (PET) is a powerful tool enabling the investigation of molecular, metabolic and functional parameters due to its high sensitivity and the variety of available specific radiopharmaceuticals. PET imaging is routinely employed in the clinics within different areas, e.g., for the diagnosis, staging and treatment response of tumor diseases in oncology, for diagnoses of neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia or Parkinson Disease and in cardiology to examine cardiac functionality or cardiovascular diseases. In regards to small animal imaging, PET is a powerful tool for basic research, facilitating the assessment of molecular and functional processes of diseases as well as potential therapies due to a multitude of obtainable animal models to study those diseases.