Finnish researchers have created a device for the mapping of the human brain that combines magnetoencephalography (MEG) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), Medical News Today reports. The imaging device will allow patients to only undergo one imaging session instead of two. It can also overcome some of the shortcomings of MEG, which can result in low image accuracy; and MRI, which typically requires the patient to be placed inside a narrow tube and can be traumatic for people who are claustrophobic. The combination of the two technologies also results in higher accuracy than conventional MRI scanning.
While devices that combine different imaging modalities are becoming more common, combining MEG and MRI was difficult because their magnetic fields interfered with one another. The researchers at Aalto University resolved this by developing very sensitive magnetic field sensors, lowering the magnetic field strength of MRI. The new technology could be used to map the brains of patients with epilepsy or cancer, for example.Camilla Andersson