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ABSTRACT: PCT Application: http://www.wipo.int/pctdb/en/wo.jsp?WO=2010025946
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 Gating in small-animal CT imaging can compensate artifacts caused by physiological motion during scanning, such as breathing and heart action. However, published gating approaches for small animals are extrinsic, relying on additional hardware to derive the gating signals. Such known gating techniques also require human intervention to identify a subjective region of interest in which to perform gating analysis.
 There is a need in the art for alternative gating systems to those presently available. The present invention satisfies this need.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 The present application relates to the field of medical imaging. In particular the present application relates to the field of gated medical imaging. Embodiments described in the present application are particularly useful in X-ray computed tomography (CT) applications involving small animals. The present application is also particularly useful for non-treatment scientific research applications.
 In contrast to prior known gating techniques, which require human intervention to identify a subjective region of interest in which to perform gating analysis, the systems and methods of the present application embody a method of intrinsic respiratory gating of small animals, including mice, rats, and rabbits in an imaging system. In one embodiment of the invention, the imaging system is a flat-panel cone-beam CT system. The systems and methods of the present application as applied to intrinsic respiratory gating in small animals make additional gating hardware and preparatory efforts superfluous. The various embodiments improve image quality and allow derivation of functional data.
Ref. No: WO 2010/025946 - PCT application. US prelimnary, Year: 01/2008