Appeal to bring the future of medical imaging to Yorkshire reaches £1.5 million milestone
An appeal to bring a revolutionary medical imaging scanner to Yorkshire to accelerate pioneering research into devastating diseases and give patients access to ground-breaking clinical trials, has reached the £1.5 million milestone.
More than 7,500 people have already generously donated to the £2 million Sheffield Scanner Appeal, launched by the University of Sheffield to bring the first MRI-PET facility to the region.
The cutting-edge scanner combines two powerful clinical imaging tools that provide complementary information used to help diagnose many diseases and assess the effect of current and new therapies.
The new MRI-PET scanner will capture both of these images at the same time, in a single scan, providing doctors with a detailed map of how the body is functioning and the underlying causes of disease.
It will be one of only eight MRI-PET facilities in the UK and the only one of these scanners in Yorkshire.
The advanced imaging technology will transform understanding of serious conditions including cancer, dementia, Parkinson’s, diabetes and heart disease. This will accelerate discoveries from the laboratory into clinical trials to develop new therapies and better outcomes for patients.
The MRI-PET facility will also bring additional clinical trials to South Yorkshire giving patients across the region access to novel treatments before other parts of the country.
Professor Dame Pamela Shaw, Vice-President and Head of Medicine, Dentistry and Health at the University of Sheffield, has been leading the campaign.
“We have been overwhelmed by the response to the Sheffield Scanner Appeal and the generosity of thousands of individuals and groups who have helped us to reach the £1.5 million milestone,” she said.
“I have been touched by all of the personal stories our supporters have shared with us, especially those who have been affected by the diseases which the scanner will help to treat in the future.
“With building work due to start over the summer, we need to reach our £2 million goal to keep the project on track to ensure that staff have access to all equipment that they need when the facility opens in 2019.”
The University is matching every £1 raised through the Sheffield Scanner Appeal to bring the facility to the city. The scanner will help to enhance the work of scientists and clinicians at Sheffield’s NIHR Biomedical Research Centre dedicated to translational neuroscience for chronic neurological disorders.
The Biomedical Research Centre, which was launched in April 2017, is a research partnership between the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and aims to improve the treatment and care of people living with diseases such as motor neurone disease (MND), Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, stroke and dementia.
Since its launch last year, the Sheffield Scanner fundraising campaign has received widespread support from staff, current and former students, members of the local community and friends of the University who have taken part in sponsored sporting events, bake sales, quiz nights and donated one-off gifts.
Artitaya Hongsuwan, 18, from Sheffield raised more than £250 for the Scanner Appeal thanks to her sponsored haircut. Artitaya’s long locks were past her hip before taking the chop and undergoing a dramatic transformation.
“I wasn’t really nervous until it came to the day itself and I realised what a big transformation it was going to be,” said Artitaya.
“My mum’s friend had read about the appeal on the internet and I thought it would be a great thing to do. It was really kind of my family and friends to sponsor me.
“It is really nice knowing that the scanner will go on to help not just one or two people but so many people across the whole region.”
Next month 300 people will take part in a marathon walk across the Peak District in the Big Walk 2018. The event, which will take place on Friday 22 June 2018, is expected to raise thousands of pounds for the Sheffield Scanner Appeal.
The walk will start in Lodge Moor, three miles west of the University. The route will then pass through Stanage Edge, Derwent Edge, Low Bradfield and Loxley Valley before finishing at the University campus. A limited number of places are still available for The Big Walk 2018.
The University of Sheffield
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