Current Research and Scholarly Interests
My research is focused on developing and evaluating molecular imaging agents for visualizing neurological diseases in living subjects.
In particular, I am interested in imaging neuroinflammation, microglial activation, neurodegeneration, cognitive decline, and neurogenesis using positron emission tomography (PET). Non-invasive PET imaging of these biochemical processes in living, intact, subjects may lead to an enhanced understanding of a range of brain disorders (including Alzheimers disease, stroke and depression), ultimately generating effective diagnostic techniques and treatment strategies.
My Ph.D. was focused on the development of novel PET radioligands for imaging the translocator protein (18kDa) (TSPO). Since TSPO expression reflects microglial activation and neuroinflammation, radioligands for this protein may act as valuable tools in detecting regions of active brain disease before any clinical signs manifest. These radioligands may also be used to study disease progression and monitor treatment effectiveness.