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Department of Diagnostic Imaging

The research efforts of the department are driven by four imaging research labs, each representing strategic research directions of the department.

Visceral Organ and Musculoskeletal Imaging Research is devoted to developing and evaluating non-invasive, quantitative MRI tests for assessment of disease or therapy-related changes (e.g. iron deposition, fat content) in parenchymal organs (liver, kidney), bone, cartilage and muscle. This team also provides support to collaborative projects pertaining to whole body and musculoskeletal imaging.

Structural and Connectivity Imaging Research focuses on using non-invasive MR technology to expand the understanding of the impact of cancer and its treatment on the developing brain by quantifying changes in brain structure and function and relating these changes to later neurocognitive deficits which have a substantial impact on the quality of life of survivors.

Imaging Genomics and Functional Imaging Research plays a central role in two programmatic institutional efforts. Imaging genomic research is conducted to elucidate the cellular origins of various tumors in the central nervous system, correlate imaging semiology with histopathological and molecular features to understand the underlying histoarchitectural and pathophysiological processes. Functional imaging addresses changes in brain networks associated with cognitive deficits, as well as brain network changes in response to interventions designed to improve cognitive function. In addition, work to identify and determine what factors mediate neural phenotypes will help guide changes in therapy to reduce cognitive toxicity or determine the most effective interventions.

Molecular Imaging Research drives the development of innovative radiopharmaceuticals for positron emission tomographic (PET) imaging for diagnostic and potentially therapeutic (theranostics) purposes. The research focuses on the development of new, more efficient methods for producing existing radioactive drugs in the cyclotron facility.