spring 2023
HEL-8044 Preclinical Imaging in Nuclear Medicine - 10 ECTS

Application deadline

To be announced

Type of course

PhD course. May be taken as a singular course.

Admission requirements

This course has a maximum capacity of 10 students. A minimum requirement for the course to be arranged is 4 registered students.

A minimum requirement to be admitted to this course is a master’s degree or equivalent or admission to a Student Research Programme.

If the number of applicants exceeds the course capacity, the applicants will be prioritized in the following order:

1) PhD Students affiliated to the national network ‘Digital Life Norwegian Research school’.

2) PhD students, research fellows and students participating in the Medical Student Research Programme at UiT The Arctic University of Norway (not affiliated with ‘Digital Life Norwegian Research School’).

3) PhD students and students at a Medical Student Research Programme at other universities (not affiliated with ‘Digital Life Norwegian Research School’).

4) Applicants who have minimum a master's degree or equivalent, but have not been admitted to a PhD programme.

It is recommended although not obligatory to have the radioactivity safety course (HMS-stråling del) and the FELASA Laboratory animal science course (HEL-8014).

Course content

The topics discussed will give an overview of radiation protection and dosimetry, basics in radiochemistry and radiopharmacy, animal welfare and radiotracer injection methods, in vitro and ex vivo autoradiography, biodistribution, metabolism and binding-assays of radiotracers. The preclinical imaging using PET, SPECT combined with MR/CT or BLImaging, the image analysis and aspects of translational research (from preclinic to clinics).

Recommended prerequisites

HEL-8014 Animal Experimentation for Researchers

Objectives of the course

Students will complete the course with the following achievements


  • Have a basic understanding of the radiochemistry, radiopharmacy, biodistribution of radiotracers and the factors affecting the choice of radiotracers for a specific imaging task
  • Be able to describe and discuss advantages and limitations of modern techniques for in vivo, ex vivo and in vitro preclinical molecular imaging- These techniques include Positron-Emission-Tomography (PET), Single-Photon-Emission Computer Tomography (SPECT), Magnetic Resonance (MR), Computed Tomography (CT) or Bioluminescence (BLI) imaging, autoradiography and biodistribution-studies.
  • Have the theoretical foundation of preclinical molecular imaging as a modern research tool.
  • Know the steps to follow during a PET/CT/MR or SPECT/CT study, including animal handling and preparatory techniques for the molecular imaging experiment, scan performance, image reconstruction, data handling and analysis and image validation methods.
  • Have an insight about recents developements of radionuclide targeted diagnostic and therapy.


  • Design a standard in vivo PET/SPECT/CT/MR experiment.
  • In vitro validation of radiotracers
  • Plan, prepare and perform a standard in vitro and ex vivo autoradiography experiments, including collection, preparation and cryo-sectioning of frozen tissue, incubation with a radiotracers and image acquisitions as well as analysis.
  • Plan, prepare and perform a standard ex vivo biodistribution experiment, including sacrificing the animal after PET-tracer administration, dissection and collecting the organs of interest, measuring the radioactivity in each organ using well counter, analyze, correlate and compare the result with in vivo imaging.
  • Prepare static or dynamic PET/CT/MR scan protocols, as well as a SPECT/CT imaging experiment.
  • Analyse and extract useful information from the static or dynamic PET images (for example: specific uptake values (SUV) and time activity curves), as well as Evaluate the information provided by the SPECT images


  • Understand the workflow of a small animal imaging study from the radiotracer development and synthesis to the in vitro validation and in vivo imaging.
  • Have the capability of developing molecular imaging protocols involving PET/CT/MR and SPECT/CT.
  • Identify key issues in a standard imaging study.
  • Understand the potential of treating diseases with radiotherapy and radionuclide targeted therapy
  • Have the overview of how to handle images as data.

Language of instruction and examination


Teaching methods

Two weeks intensive course that will offer theoretical and practical training in cutting edge techniques in small animal molecular imaging. The teaching will be given as lectures, workshops, demonstrations, and practical hands-on exercises.


Examination: Weighting: Duration: Grade scale:
Off campus exam 1/2 Passed / Not Passed
School exam 1/2 2 Hours Passed / Not Passed

Coursework requirements:

To take an examination, the student must have passed the following coursework requirements:

Attendance to lectures and laboratory Approved – not approved
UiT Exams homepage

More info about the coursework requirements

Work requirements: 90 percent attendance at the course sessions including lectures and laboratory demonstrations.

More info about the assignment

Multiple choice exam (2h) based on syllabus in English graded passed or fail

Home examination, 10 pages, graded pass or fail. The examination can be answered in any Scandinavian language or English.

Re-sit examination

Re-sit examination is offered for the course.
  • About the course
  • Campus: Tromsø |
  • ECTS: 10
  • Course code: HEL-8044
  • Tidligere år og semester for dette emnet