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Emission computed tomography (ECT) is a technology for medical imaging whose importance is increasing rapidly. There is a growing appreciation for the value of the functional (as opposed to anatomical) information that is provided by ECT and there are significant advancements taking place, both in the instrumentation for data collection, and in the computer methods for generating images from the measured data. These computer methods are designed to solve the inverse problem known as "image reconstruction from projections". This paper uses the various models of the data collection process as the framework for presenting an overview of the wide variety of methods that have been developed for image reconstruction in the major subfields of ECT, which are positron emission tomography (PET) and single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT). The overall sequence of the major sections in the paper, and the presentation within each major section, both proceed from the more realistic and general models to those that are idealized and application specific. For most of the topics, the description proceeds from the three-dimensional case to the two-dimensional case. The paper presents a broad overview of algorithms for PET and SPECT, giving references to the literature where these algorithms and their applications are described in more detail.