Proposal for the standardisation of multi-centre trials in nuclear medicine imaging: Prerequisites for a European 123I-FP-CIT SPECT database

John Caddell Dickson, Livia Tossici-Bolt, Terez Sera, Robin De Nijs, Jan Booij, Maria Claudia Bagnara, Anita Seese, Pierre Malick Koulibaly, Umit Ozgur Akdemir, Cathrine Jonsson, Michel Koole, Maria Raith, Markus Nowak Lonsdale, Jean George, Felicia Zito, Klaus Tatsch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Multi-centre trials are an important part of proving the efficacy of procedures, drugs and interventions. Imaging components in such trials are becoming increasingly common; however, without sufficient control measures the usefulness of these data can be compromised. This paper describes a framework for performing high-quality multi-centre trials with single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), using a pan-European initiative to acquire a normal control dopamine transporter brain scan database as an example.Methods: A framework to produce high-quality and consistent SPECT imaging data was based on three key areas: quality assurance, the imaging protocol and system characterisation. Quality assurance was important to ensure that the quality of the equipment and local techniques was good and consistently high; system characterisation helped understand and where possible match the performance of the systems involved, whereas the imaging protocol was designed to allow a degree of flexibility to best match the characteristics of each imaging device. Results: A total of 24 cameras on 15 sites from 8 different manufacturers were evaluated for inclusion in our multicentre initiative. All results matched the required level of specification and each had their performance characterised. Differences in performance were found between different system types and cameras of the same type. Imaging protocols for each site were modified to match their individual characteristics to produce comparable high-quality SPECT images. Conclusion: A framework has been designed to produce high-quality data for multi-centre SPECT studies. This framework has been successfully applied to a pan-European initiative to acquire a healthy control dopamine transporter image database.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)188-197
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012


  • I-FP-CIT
  • Dopamine transporter
  • Multi-centre trials
  • Normal database

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Proposal for the standardisation of multi-centre trials in nuclear medicine imaging: Prerequisites for a European 123I-FP-CIT SPECT database'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this