Institut de Neurosciences Cognitives et Intégratives d'Aquitaine (UMR5287)

Aquitaine Institute for Cognitive and Integrative Neuroscience

Université de Bordeaux

Zone nord Bat 2 2ème étage
146, rue Léo Saignat
33076 Bordeaux cedex


Supervisory authorities

CNRS Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes Université de Bordeaux

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Neurocampus Unitéde Formation de Biologie


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Bordeaux PET Research center

by Loïc Grattier - published on , updated on


The PET research unit is a center dedicated to the molecular imaging with positron emitter tracers, created jointly in 2010 by the Hospital and the University of Bordeaux on the site of Xavier Arnozan hospital in Pessac. Since 2011, this unit is a core team of laboratory of excellence TRAIL.
The centre, under the responsibility of Professor Philippe Fernandez, hosts a team of a dozen people from different departments and conducts imaging research in the CNRS laboratory INCIA (UMR 5287) directed by Jean-René Cazalets.


- Participating to multicentric clinical trials promoted by academic structures (hospital, university) or industrial partners,
- Developing and conducting clinical trials in oncology and neurology fields with commercial tracers or tracers without market authorization (in situ synthesis)
- Developing and validating new radiopharmaceuticals (synthesis of specific peptides in collaboration with UMR 5255, or aptamers in collaboration with INSERM U869, development of new methods for fast synthesis of tracers radiolabeled with gallium 68).


For our research, the use, the development and synthesis of radiopharmaceuticals is possible through:
- a laboratory of radiochemistry equipped with some hot cells shared with an industrial partner, IBA molecular-CisBio international, which develops new tracers for clinical use (Fcholine, for example). Various radiopharmaceuticals radiolabelled with 18-Fluorine are synthetized for clinical protocols (such as FDG, FMISO, FLT, MPPF….), but also, new tracers are under development for preclinical validation (tracer for angiogenesis imaging, tracers for multimodal (PET-MR) imaging...).
- a hot cell localized in PET unit equipped with a synthetizer (FastLab) in collaboration with an industrial partner (GE healthcare).This synthetizer permits the synthesis of new tracers radiolabelled with gallium 68.
Finally, the laboratory is equipped with an HPLC and a UV detector intended in the quality control of new synthesized radiopharmaceuticals.
The clinical exams are realized on a PET-CT machine (GE Discovery RX) since May 2010 (agreement number: 333180116LBD012010). This machine is under responsability of the CNRS unit (UMS3428) directed by Pr Vincent Dousset.
Since two years, the research molecular imaging unit has obtained the European PET/CT accreditation by the European Association of Nuclear Medicine (EANM) giving to our centre a label of excellence in PET imaging research field.
Then, our team develops also methodologies in image processing concerning segmentation methods for radiotherapy planning treatment, pharmacokinetics modelization or imaging correction methods.

The interest of our center is to propose a PET-CT machine entirely dedicated to research which offers ability to realize dynamic and long time acquisitions for example study of tumoral hypoxia during 4 hours, but also flexibility in scan scheduling compared to a PET-CT used for routine activity.

Thereby, an industrial has entrusted to our structure for the realization of a clinical trial to study the interest of fluorocholine in staging of high risk prostate cancers, allowing to include 70 % of patients over 2 years.

So, our PET centre proposes a translational research from development and validation of new PET tracers to clinical trials in different fields such as oncology, neurology but also infection and inflammation diseases.