Neuro MRI research discovers new ways of approaching the brain’s most complex problems--ranging from development, connectivity, and cognitive function, to disease processes (e.g., cancer, stroke, degenerative disorders) and aging. We work on structural, perfusion, diffusion, susceptibility, and microscopy imaging methods to map brain structure and function, and we are dedicated to bringing the best MRI techniques to everyday clinical use.
Body MRI research includes creation of new hardware designs and contrast agents, faster acquisition sequences, and more precise and accurate processing methods for structural and functional assessment of organs and systems in the body. Our efforts are making a clinical impact in the areas of cancer detection (in breast, prostate, pancreas, etc.), image-guided interventions (e.g., tumor biopsy & ablation), diagnosing sleep apnea, and physiologic measurement of bowel, kidney, and the heart. Our musculoskeletal imaging research studies osteoarthritis and post-operative imaging near joint replacements.
Cardiac MR (CMR) research involves further developing novel cardiovascular MRI techniques to measure Flow, Motion, Diffusion and Perfusion, with increased quantitative accuracy and reduced acquisition times. Our interests and current projects include gradient waveform design, computational modeling frameworks to estimate changes in ventricular stiffness, and characterizing biomarkers for detection of cardiomyopathy with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Our overall goal is to translate these techniques into improved clinical care.
High-field MRI research involves specialized system hardware and novel techniques to address both the challenges and opportunities uniquely presented by imaging with high-strength magnetic fields (≥ 7 Tesla). Our work designing and constructing precision components yields system refinements to achieve high-quality imaging for specific applications, and our development of custom pulse sequences and analysis strategies provide new insight into neurological function, neurodegenerative disorders, mechanisms of tumor growth, and cardiovascular disease.
MR spectroscopy and multinuclear imaging research focuses on the development of noninvasive methods to assess key metabolic processes throughout the human body. Primary applications of this work include enhanced cancer diagnosis and treatment assessment, improved understanding of diabetes, liver disease, and cardiac function, and novel insights into brain function in psychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases.
MR-guided Focused Ultrasound Surgery (MRgFUS) research develops novel image-guided treatment methods involving high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) and also studies the bioeffects of HIFU in tissue. We are actively working on neuromodulation, ablation, and drug delivery as they apply to the brain (for cancer and epilepsy) as well as liver, pancreas, bone, and prostate cancer.
X-ray and computed tomography (CT) research focuses on developing new hardware components and software algorithms to bring new capabilities and higher performance to clinical scanners. Current projects include assessment of stroke imaging protocols, improvements to interventional imaging, adaptive filtration to reduce radiation exposure, and new detector technology.
Ultrasound research focuses on new algorithms and transducer designs for novel clinical applications. By developing advanced real-time beamforming techniques, we enable live high-contrast imaging of anatomical structure, blood flow, and microbubble contrast agents (which may be targeted for early detection of cancer). Our device innovations include acoustic radiation force catheters for elasticity imaging of plaques in coronary arteries, and a low-cost solution enabling full-volume 3D ultrasound.