John MacDuffie Woodburn

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Isometric View

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Top View

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Back View

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Breathing Intake with Imaging Coil

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Exploded View

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AV in Use




The animal ventilator (AV) was a collaborative design effort of Frank Hammond, Michael Hellman, and John MacDuffie Woodburn. The AV was designed and built at the Department of Radiology at the University of Pennsylvania from the infant stage to the finished marketable product . The AV is currently used in all the clinical hyperpolarized (hp) studies at UPENN and ten other universties around the country. The AV required the functionality of hp mixtures of several gases at known percentages to a range of endothermic animals in an MRI environment. The AV had to meet several design criteria that were absent in commercial systems:


1. Reproduction of the breathing cycle

2. Imaging different breathing regimes

3. Reduction of the T1 of HP 3He Gas

4. Minimization of dead volume

5. Creation of a resistant HP 3He Tedalar bag system with negligible effect on the depolarization of HP 3He gas

6. Flow and pressure mode control

7. Script-driven interface for standardization


Additionally, the AV needed to be constructed locally and be species-independent.