Frequenty Asked Questions

Scientists at USC and other research institutions are invited to use the MIC for their research. We are able to provide assistance with study design, imaging procedures, imaging probe design, and image analysis. The MIC staff can perform the imaging procedures for you, or you can perform the imaging unassisted after our staff has trained you. Use of the facility is by appointment only and PIs are recharged for their imaging time and for any laboratory and/or data analysis support. The following steps will guide you through the process of setting up and conducting a study.

Study Design:

Researches who wish to determine the feasibility of an imaging study can submit a short (max. one page) description, including aims and image requirements, to the MIC Lab Manager, Grant Dagliyan (

Pilot Studies:

University of Southern California PIs may be allowed free scanning time, particularily if the scans are to obtain preliminary data for a grant proposal, and if the PI lacks sufficient funding to pay for imaging sessions. The MIC review committee will consider the application and you will typically be notified of approval or denial within 2 weeks after submission. The application can be found here.

Institutional Animal Care Protocol (IACUC):

All Researchers will need an approval Animal Use and Care Protocol (forms); allow 4-6 weeks for approval of a new protocol by the IACUC. If you already have an approved protocol, but it does not cover imaging studies, an amendment can be submitted to the IACUC. If you need assistance with IACUC Protocol preparation, contact Grant Dagliyan ( Research from other institutions should contact Grant Dagliyan for assitance with obtaining an approved IACUC Protocol.

Radiation Use Authorization:

Researches who will use PET, CT, or autoradiographic imaging will require an approved Radiation Use Authorization (Radiation Safety Forms). If PIs choose to perform PET, SPECT or autoradiography studies unassisted, their personnel working with radioactivity must meet the following requirements: Personnel must take the “Laboratory Radiation Safety” class offered by EH&S; be listed on the RUA that covers their imaging study; wear radiation dosimetry when ever working with radioactivity; and follow MIC safety protocols for working with radioactive material.

Institutional Biosafety Committee Protocol (IBC):

Researches who work with one or more materials listed below MUST submit a completed IBC Form for committee approval, per NIH Guidelines.

Imaging Data Management:

All the data post imaging session will be available to user within 10 business days, it depends on complexity of the scan. For example, optical Imaging data is available immediately. Once data is given back to the user MIC is not responsible for archiving the data anymore. User must bring a hard drive, USB, etc to collect image data, or we can upload to our iPacs server and have it available for download for a few weeks. We may have raw data archived for up to a year after the scan, but retrieving it takes time. We urge our users to collect image data as well as raw scan data and keep securely on their own storage devices. You can request MIC IT department for a way collect your data and where to store under certain circumstances.

Instrument Training:

Training is provided on the imaging instruments without charge for those investigators who wish to perform their studies without MIC staff assistance. Once the trainee has demonstrated under our supervision their ability to operate the instrument according to MIC policies and procedures, they will be allowed to use the instrument without supervision.

Contact Grant Dagliyan ( to setup training sessions.


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