Semmelweis Egyetem, Budapest, Hungary

Group Description

Brief description of legal entity
Semmelweis Nanobiotechnology and In Vivo Imaging Centre (NIVIC) belongs to the Department of Biophysics and Radiation Biology and is connected to two inter-institute scientific networks at the University: "Semmelweis Network for Nanosciences" and "Semmelweis Bio-imaging Network", working as a core service facility. The mission of the Nanobiotechnology and In Vivo Imaging Centre is to provide a comprehensive basic imaging facility for innovative research, where fundamental questions may be addressed, by using novel instrumentation, at all levels of biological organization ranging from individual molecules to the whole organism. The instrumentation for single molecule structure and functional imaging is one of the most comprehensive setups in its field in Europe. The NIVIC represents state-of-the-art imaging technologies and is highly interdisciplinary, encompassing all areas of imaging, ranging from single molecule analysis through whole animal imaging with an outreach to clinical imaging at the Department of Radiology of the University.

Main tasks
A leading expert research team deals with structural, biomechanical and functional single-molecule imaging of fibrillous molecules using very high definition ex vivo and cellular/in vivo microscopy. The Department of Biophysics possesses decade-long experience in the production, testing and microscopy of single molecules in spectroscopy and that is now linked to research in laser-excited fluorescence optical imaging instrumentation. A new in-vivo multi-photon microscope has been installed in Q1 2011. In vivo molecular biomarker imaging and the production of multi-modality probe-linked nanoparticles is the specialty of the in-vivo imaging group. Translationally, problems relating to protein structures and protein aggregation in neuroinflammation are imaged in-vivo using SPECT, PET, optical and MRI methods.

Participation in INMiND: WP1 / WP2 / WP4 / WP5 / WP6

Previous experience relevant to INMiND tasks

Prof. Kellermayer's group has wide-ranging experience in single-molecule biophysics and nanobiotechnology including molecular characterization of neuro-degenerative proteins. Its results are related primarily to the methodology of nanotechnology and nanobiotechnology ‘foci’ of disease-specific molecular alterations in the neurodegenerative and muscular diseases. Their instrumentation includes a highly specialized dual-beam, counter-propagating optical tweezers instrument combined with epifluorescence imaging for the purpose of mechanically manipulating individual filamentous biomolecules. A spatially and temporally synchronized atomic force microscope (AFM) and total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscope system (STIRF/AFM) has also been developed and is in active use. The arrangement is unique in that it allows for spatially-temporally synchronized acquisition of fluorescence emission and topographical or mechanical data. The in-vivo imaging facility applies a NanoSPECT/CT imaging system with a low-dose high-resolution micro X-ray CT scanner with a spatial resolution under 0.4 mm and 30 µm, respectively (NanoSPECT-PLUS/CT™). The group is working in a dedicated level C isotope facility and has a radiation-enabled animal house. A PET/CT (NanoPET/CTTM) device and a unique small animal sequential PET/MRI imager will be installed in Q2 2011. With use of isotopic labelling, tracing methods, nanoparticles, stem cell labelling and follow-up, neurotrauma, neuro-oncology and BBB penetration studies are being performed and dedicated novel multimodality nanoparticles were developed.

Semmelweis University
INMiND Office
European Institute for Molecular Imaging (EIMI) Waldeyerstr. 15
· 48149 Münster
Tel: +49 251 83 49300 · Fax: +49 251 83 49313