The primary focus of the NIC is to develop and understand the in vivo nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) techniques that provide information on function, physiology, and anatomy. The NIC houses a 9.4T Varian MR system and a 3T Siemens MR scanner, both of which are dedicated to basic research. The 9.4T laboratory is designed to optimally perform physiological and functional studies. The 3T scanner is dedicated to head scanning, is designed specifically for fast imaging of the brain, and has available head coils for imaging of humans and large animals.
Ancillary visual and auditory stimulus presentation systems are available, as are an in vivo physiological monitoring system (ECG, oxygen saturation, heart rate and respiration rate), and an in-scanner eye tracking system. A physiology/optic laboratory, a chemistry laboratory, an electronics laboratory as well as interview rooms are connected with MR laboratories. Veterinary monitors (pulse oximeters, capnograph, ECG, blood pressure) and a veterinary anesthesia machine with isoflurane vaporizer, laryngoscope, and stethoscopes are also available.
Additional imaging instruments are available in an on-site physiology laboratory, including a two-photon laser-scanning microscope for in vivo cellular fluorescence imaging; and a macro-zoom epi-fluorescence microscope for intrinsic optical imaging, flavoprotein autofluorescence imaging, and laser speckling imaging.