• EXPLORER Total Body PET scanner

    EXPLORER — faster, higher-quality images for patient care

The first and only Total Body PET scanner approved by the FDA in the United States.

EXPLORER Total Body PET Scanner

VIDEO (click to play): UC Davis Health is now home to the first ever total-body PET scanner. EXPLORER is a game changer in diagnosing and treating many diseases, such as cancer, arthritis and cardiovascular disease, and is currently available to UC Davis Health patients.

The EXPLORER Total Body Scanner was designed to be the world’s highest sensitivity positron emission tomography (PET) scanner.

PET is an extremely safe medical imaging technique that can map the location or track the movement of tiny amounts of radioactively-tagged compounds (radiotracers) after they are introduced into the body. There are thousands of PET scanners across the world performing millions of PET scans in patients each year.

Our new EXPLORER Total Body Scanner acquires PET imaging of the body, from head to toe, all at the same time. It is the first and only Total Body PET scanner approved by the FDA in the United States.

The EXPLORER scanner has an effective sensitivity for total-body imaging that is 40-fold higher than current commercial scanners and is expected to open up completely new ways in which PET can be used in biomedical research and ultimately in clinical practice. The scanner has broad applications for cancer diagnosis, as well as for studies of blood flow, inflammation, immunological and metabolic disorders and infections. The developers also anticipate it will be useful for patients with brain diseases, heart conditions and diseases that involve multiple organs, as well as for children because of its speed and relative safety.

A broad range of total-body imaging applications exists for EXPLORER because:

Ramsey Badawi and Simon Cherry
EXPLORER was developed by UC Davis scientists Ramsey Badawi and Simon Cherry.

  • The quality of the images is much better, allowing physicians to see smaller tumors and other diseases earlier.
  • The scanner can be set up to run much faster than conventional PET scanners, which can make it easier and more comfortable for patients. This is particularly good for young children or patients with joint pain.
  • The scanner can alternatively be set up to use much less radiation, which is helpful for children, or for research in which the same person needs to be scanned many times.
  • The entire body can be imaged at the same time, which means it can track changes in a drug’s distribution throughout the entire body, enabling an understanding of how a drug concentrates in organs and tissue over time.

Your physician and our Nuclear Medicine doctors will determine if the EXPLORER Total Body PET scanner is right for you.