The purpose of the UCLA Renal Blood Flow (RBF) program is to measure quantitative blood perfusion in the kidney using dynamic O-15 water PET. The general goal of the study is to assess global renal blood flow changes that are due to pharmaceutical intervention applied to cardiac patients. A single compartmental model is used for the calculation. The input function (time activity curve in blood) is obtained from a VOI defined over the abdominal aorta on the dynamic images. Tissue time activity curve (TAC) in the kidney is obtained as the average over a VOI outlined around the cortex of the kidney. One tissue TAC is obtained for each kidney. RBF is estimated by curve fitting of the O-15 water model to the tissue TAC. The model-fitting program (least square regression) is identical to the one used in our web-based TKMF package from the UCLA computational group. The measurement is repeated 4 times (i.e., a total of four runs) for each subject, with runs 1 and 3 at baseline condition and runs 2 and 4 post intervention. Since the primary parameter of interest is percent change in RBF and the size of either aorta or the kidney cortex are not expected to be affected by the intervention, no partial volume correction is needed/applied, but care is taken to make sure the VOI sizes defined in different runs are consistent among the different runs of the study. The consistency of the estimates between the two baseline runs is used as a measure for quality control.

The primary collaborators of the project are: Dr. Holly Middlehauff, Dr. Henry Huang and Dr. Heinz Schelbert. Mr. James Yu and Dr. Tatiana Sergueeva perform the data analysis, and Mr. David Truong provides all necessary computer support.

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