My research interests encompass magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), biomedical engineering and physics. My goals include bringing MRI into the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and developing innovative image-guided therapies. I have been an active researcher in magnetic resonance (MR) for more than 40 years and have worked at Cincinnati Children's since 2008.
I have made several significant contributions to the field, including the following innovations:
- Phase contrast magnetic resonance angiography
- Active MR device tracking using microcoils
- An MR catheter (cath) lab for electrophysiology interventions
- Trans-rectal HIFU probes for prostate cancer
- An MR compatible incubator for premature babies
- The world's first small-bore neonate MR scanner
Most of my publications have been in the field of MR. While many of my abstracts, papers and patents have had a widespread impact in research and clinical practice, several of these report innovations that are the first in their class. The following is a brief descriptive summary of these works.
- 1986 - Phase Contrast MR Angiography. This is the earliest blood-flow MR imaging method and was the first to show MR's ability to supplant X-ray methods for diagnostic angiography. It provides excellent background suppression and quantitative measures of blood flow. It is available today on most MR scanners and is widely used (US Patent 4,714,081).
- 1993 - Active MR device tracking using microcoils. This approach has become one of the standards for MR-guided interventions. It provides 3D device localization in real-time with minimal acoustic noise.
- One implementation of active MR device tracking was a fully functional MR cath lab for electrophysiology procedures of the heart installed at Massachusetts General Hospital in 2007- This cath lab was used in a series of ground-breaking animal studies demonstrating the safety and efficacy of MR-guided EP interventions for atrial fibrillation (AF) and ventricular tachycardia (VT).
- 1993 - Catheter tracking with radiofrequency fields. This approach for tracking catheters uses non-ionizing radiation in a conventional cath lab to greatly reduce X-ray exposure. It was further developed by Biosense Webster and has become the foundation of their CARTO™ electrophysiology product. (US Patent 5,265,610).
- 2002 - An MR compatible incubator system for premature babies. This invention was reduced to practice as a comprehensive MR-compatible incubator. It was delivered to collaborators at the University of California, San Francisco. This prototype has been used in several published studies illustrating the utility and promise of neonatal MR (US Patent 6,611,702).
- 2012 - A small-bore MR scanner for imaging premature babies. This unique scanner combines a small-bore 1.5 Tesla magnet with custom patient handling and fully capable imaging electronics to provide high-quality MR imaging for neonates. The scanner was installed in the Cincinnati Children's NICU in 2012.
During my career, it's been my honor to receive several awards and appointments, including:
- Proctor and Gamble research fellow (1980-81)
- General Electric Dushman Award (1987)
- Eastern New York Patent Lawyers' Association, Inventor of the Year, (1987 and 1993)
- Intellectual Property Owners Inc., Distinguished Inventor Award (1988)
- Intellectual Property Owners, Inc., Inventor of the Year Award (1991)
- AAPM Sylvia Sorkin Greenfield Award for best paper in the journal Medical Physics (1993)
- Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine Gold Medal Award (1993)
- Named one of "50 R&D Stars to Watch" by Industry Week Magazine, Dec. (1993)
- Society of Magnetic Resonance, board member (1995)
- General Electric research and development center's Coolidge Fellowship (1996)
- General Electric research and development center's Whitney Technical Achievement Award, (1996 and 2005)
- International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, named fellow (1997)
- Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, visiting fellowship (1998)
- American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, fellow (2002)
- Society of Pediatric Radiology Caffey Award for best scientific paper (senior author) (2011)
- Thomas L. Slovis Award for the outstanding basic science paper, appearing in Pediatric Radiology (2012)
- Taking on Tomorrow Award from Boston Children's Hospital (2013)
- Paper on 3D Phase Contrast MR Angiography was selected as one of the top 30 papers in the first 30 years of the Journal Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (2014)
I am an author or co-author on 134 peer-reviewed articles, 28 book chapters and over 281 conference proceedings. I have given 221 invited lectures. I also have 117 issued US patents with an additional 11 patents pending. My H-index is 63 (including publications and patents).