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The Atlanta Research & Education Foundation is designed to facilitate collaborations between the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Atlanta and other institutions. We welcome your interest in our facility, personnel, and research capabilities.

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Investigator: Dacian Bonta
Phone: (404) 321-6111 ext. 6066
Primary Research Interest: Nuclear Medicine
Description of Research: In collaboration with Dr. N. Alazraki and Dr. O. Ioachimescu, I am developing scintigraphic methods for non-invasively screening patients for AAA/PAD, in patients who are undergoing imaging for coronary artery disease (CAD). Our current approach uses the first pass of the radionuclide bolus through the abdominal and iliac arteries. This protocol could be incorporated into routine myocardial perfusion imaging since the heart is imaged 30-60 minutes following tracer administration.
Relevance to VA: Atherosclerotic disease of large arteries below the diaphragm is a major source of morbidity and mortality in the VA patient population. Aortic abdominal aneurysms (AAA) were detected in 1.4% of VA patients between 50-79 years old without prior history of the disease. Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is an ongoing healthcare concern in the VA system and HSRDS has sponsored research on this topic. To reduce morbidity, it is critical to detect AAA and PAD early so that preventive therapy can be instituted.

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