Preparation of ex vivo rodent phantoms for developing, testing, and training MR imaging of the kidney and other organs


  • J.M. Millward
  • J.S. Periquito
  • P.R. Delgado
  • C. Prinz
  • T. Niendorf
  • S. Waiczies


  • Methods in Molecular Biology


  • Methods Mol Biol 2216: 75-85


  • Here we describe a simple and inexpensive protocol for preparing ex vivo rodent phantoms for use in MR imaging studies. The experimental animals are perfused and fixed with formaldehyde, and then wrapped with gauze and sealed with liquid latex. This yields a phantom that preserves all organs in situ, and which avoids the need to keep fixed animals and organs in containers that have dimensions very different from living animals. This is especially important for loading in MR detectors, and specifically the RF coils, they are usually used with. The phantom can be safely stored and conveniently reused, and can provide MR scientists with a realistic phantom with which to establish protocols in preparation for preclinical in vivo studies-for renal, brain, and body imaging. The phantom also serves as an ideal teaching tool, for trainees learning how to perform preclinical MRI investigations of the kidney and other target organs, while avoiding the need for handling living animals, and reducing the total number of animals required.This protocol chapter is part of the PARENCHIMA initiative "MRI Biomarkers for CKD " (CA16103), a community-driven Action of the European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) program of the European Union, which aims to improve the reproducibility and standardization of renal MRI biomarkers.