MPI and partners to build molecular imaging lab in Mattawan


MPI Research is located in Mattawan, west of Kalamazoo. Courtesy MPI Resarch

MPI Research, a contract research organization supporting pharmaceutical and medical device R&D, has formed a strategic partnership with two other U.S. firms to build an advanced, multimillion-dollar molecular imaging lab at MPI in Mattawan.

InviCRO, of Boston, and 3D Imaging of Maumette, Ark., have already collaborated with MPI on more than 100 imaging projects, and with the new facility they plan to meet the industry’s need for comprehensive imaging services in a single location. The new molecular imaging center will provide drug developers with access to the first commercially available cyclotron facility adjacent to facilities housing lab test animals ranging from mice to monkeys.

MPI, which describes itself as the largest single-site preclinical/early clinical CRO in the world, will be the location for world-class molecular imaging, radiochemistry, and informatics to accelerate drug discovery, with a combination of integrated imaging services offered by no other CRO in the world. The imaging process involves rotating cameras that record radioisotopes that have been injected into the test subjects.

The new molecular imaging center will open in 2014, although many of the expanded imaging services, including nonhuman primate PET and CT imaging, will be available in July.

Scott Haller, associate director of Discovery Operations at MPI, said the three partner firms are sharing in the investment in the new imaging lab. The precise amount to be invested was not available but he said it is “a multimillion-dollar facility.”

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