Your new neighbor is 28,000 pounds of mystery-solving insight

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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -- The University of Nebraska Medical Center has added a "game changer" that will allow researchers to peer into the mysteries of the human brain.

That game changer is the most advanced magnetic resonance imaging scanner in Nebraska and UNMC says it's a piece of hardware that will allow them to compete with "the elite research institutions in the country in better understanding the complexities of the brain."

Tipping the scales at 28,000 pounds, UNMC says the unit will provide the highest resolution imaging available while making things easier for patients. It will drop the amount of time they spend in the MRI by 50 percent.

Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, M.D. said, “Having an MRI that is dedicated to research is the missing piece of the puzzle that we needed to take our research enterprise to the next level.

“It will not only have a huge impact on research, but it also will enhance our education and clinical care. Ultimately, it will help us unlock the mysteries of the brain and hopefully provide some answers to complex neurological problems such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, which presently don’t have any real solutions.”

The Siemens Prisma MRI scanner wore a sticker price of $2.5 million with an additional expense of about $1.5 million for installation. It's now parked in the heart of the UNMC/Nebraska Medicine campus on the first floor of the Hixson-Lied Center.

Primary funding, to the tune of approximately $3 million, was provided by the UNMC College of Medicine with the remaining $1 million coming from a National Institutes of Health research grant.

Installation was completed on December 3rd and research studies are already in progress.

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