Toward quantitative small animal pinhole SPECT: Assessment of quantitation accuracy prior to image compensations

Chia Lin Chen, Yuchuan Wang, Jason J.S. Lee, Benjamin M.W. Tsui

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Purpose: We assessed the quantitation accuracy of small animal pinhole single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) under the current preclinical settings, where image compensations are not routinely applied. Procedures: The effects of several common image-degrading factors and imaging parameters on quantitation accuracy were evaluated using Monte-Carlo simulation methods. Typical preclinical imaging configurations were modeled, and quantitative analyses were performed based on image reconstructions without compensating for attenuation, scatter, and limited system resolution. Results: Using mouse-sized phantom studies as examples, attenuation effects alone degraded quantitation accuracy by up to -18% (Tc-99m or In-111) or -41% (I-125). The inclusion of scatter effects changed the above numbers to -12% (Tc-99m or In-111) and -21% (I-125), respectively, indicating the significance of scatter in quantitative I-125 imaging. Region-of-interest (ROI) definitions have greater impacts on regional quantitation accuracy for small sphere sources as compared to attenuation and scatter effects. For the same ROI, SPECT acquisitions using pinhole apertures of different sizes could significantly affect the outcome, whereas the use of different radii-of-rotation yielded negligible differences in quantitation accuracy for the imaging configurations simulated. Conclusions: We have systematically quantified the influence of several factors affecting the quantitation accuracy of small animal pinhole SPECT. In order to consistently achieve accurate quantitation within 5% of the truth, comprehensive image compensation methods are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)195-203
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Imaging and Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Attenuation
  • Image compensations
  • Image resolution
  • Pinhole SPECT
  • Quantitation
  • Scatter
  • Small animal imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Toward quantitative small animal pinhole SPECT: Assessment of quantitation accuracy prior to image compensations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this