Magnetic Resonance Research Facility




     News and Upcoming Events

    Goodbye Casey!

    It is with sadness that we here in the MRI Research Facility must resign ourselves to the fact that Friday, June 26 is Casey Johnson's last day with our group. Casey has been a postdoctoral fellow with the lab for over three years, with his work primarily involving the study of imaging biomarkers in psychiatric disorders such as bipolar disorder. Casey's run here is epitomized in the pictures; a lot of hard work, a lot of deep thinking, and ultimately big success. His time at Iowa has been extremely productive, authoring or co-authoring nearly a dozen papers and earning awards for his presentations at international conferences. He has served as a mentor to several of the incoming students in the group as well. We know he is on to bigger and better things, but we regret having to say goodbye (Marla and Autumn will particularly miss his judgemental glances at their shenanigans).

    Casey is headed back to his home area of Minneapolis-St. Paul, where he will be a Research Associate at the University of Minnesota, shifting his focus to musculoskeletal MRI. We hope he learned a little from us here at Iowa to take with him (like don't let your wife share too many Facebook pictures). We wish him all the best in his advancing career. Good Luck Casey!


    First human brain images from Iowa 7T scanner

    March 2015 began the era of 7T brain imaging at the University of Iowa. We have begun human brain imaging on healthy volunteers with our GE MR950 scanner, and the results are already showing us new things. Above are shown sample images from T2-weighted (left panel) and FLAIR (right panel) acquisitions, where we are beginning to optimize sequences and protocols for 7T. We have also been gaining experience with BRAVO (the GE version of magnetization-prepared gradient scho) and SWAN (the GE version of susceptibility weighted imaging).


    First images from GE MR950 7T scanner

    Installation of the Magnetic Resonance Research Facility's new 7T scanner is almost complete! We have begun to acquire images in phantoms and other materials as our system is tested and calibrated. The image above is a sample of the kind of exquisite detail we hope to see once we begin human imaging. Can you guess what it is?

     T1ρ MRI provides new insight into bipolar disorder

    New picture, new insight

    In a study published January 6, 2015 in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, UI researchers showed that quantitative T1ρ MRI yielded significant differences in the cerebral white matter and the cerebellum of patients with by bipolar disorder compared to matched control subjects. T1ρ imaging is thought to be sensitive to changes in pH and/or glucose concentration, factors that are influenced by cellular metabolism. This imaging research is providing new understanding of the mechanisms of bipolar disorder and may help in its diagnosis and treatment.

    The full paper is "Brain abnormalities in bipolar disorder detected by quantitative T1ρ mapping" (link), authored by Casey Johnson, Robin Follmer, Ipek Oguz, Lois Warren, Gary Christensen, Jesse Fiedorowicz, Vincent Magnotta, and John Wemmie.


     University of Iowa MR Research Facility External Advisory Committee, October 22 and 23, 2014

     Ravinder Reddy, PhD, University of Pennsylvania. Andy Alexander, PhD, University of Wisconsin. Garry Gold, M.D., Stanford University School of Medicine.

    External Advisory Committee Itinerary

    GE 7T Lecture Series, October 23, 2014

    Garry Gold, M.D., Stanford University School of Medicine. Troy Lewein, B.A., R.T (R)(MR), GE Healthcare  

    • Title: Orthpedic Imaging at 7T
    • Time: Thursday, October 23, 12:00--1:00pm
    • Where: 283 EMRB, Seebohm Conference Room

    7T scanner has arrived.

    MRRF staff with new 7T scanner. Learn more.

    7T Coming Soon!

    The GE MR950 7T scanner is on schedule to be delivered to The University of Iowa on Thursday, June 5. If you take a look here on Thursday, you may be able to see it as it arrives and is put in place!

    The linked construction camera updates every 15 minutes.


    ISMRM 2014 Award Winners

    Congratulations to Sajan Goud Lingala, Casey Johnson, and Merry Mani on receiving Magna Cum Laude awards at the 2014 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine annual meeting in Milan, Italy. The winning presentations were

    • Towards 3D Dynamic MRI of the Lung Using Blind Compressed Sensing (Sajan Goud Lingala, Yasir Baqqal, John Newell, Dingxin Wang, Jessica C. Sieren, Daniel Thedens, and Mathews Jacob)

    • Quantitative T1rho Mapping of Bipolar Disorder: Basal Differences in Euthymia (Casey P. Johnson, Robin L. Follmer, Ipek Oguz, Lois A. Warren, Gary E. Christensen, Jess G. Fiedorowicz, Vincent A. Magnotta, and John A. Wemmie)

    • Fast Motion-Compensated ODF Reconstruction from Under-Sampled Multi-Channel Multi-Shot Non-Cartesian Diffusion Imaging Data at High Angular and Spatial Resolution (Merry Mani, Mathews Jacob, Vincent Magnotta, and Jianhui Zhong)

    Previous Events

    Research MRI Participates in Radiology Blood Drive

    What do our technologists do when they're not scanning? They give from the heart (and the rest of the cardiovascular system)! Marla and Autumn donate at the Radiology Blood Drive on May 15.

        Radiology Blood Drive


    G.E. Healthcare partners with Tesla on 7T MRI research scanners

    G.E. Healthcare, Buckinghamshire, U.K., announced a partnership with West Sussex, U.K.-based Tesla Engineering Ltd. on the development of a new 7T whole-body MRI scanner.

    The partnership will build on GE’s 10-year history of producing 7T MRI scanners, currently deployed in the U.S., Italy and Japan for medical and scientific research, primarily in morphological and functional imaging of the brain. In the U.S., G.E. has three 7T scanners installed, one each at Stanford University, the University of California, San Francisco and the Medical College of Wisconsin.

     Read the full story here.

    7T Magnet

    7T Magnet scanner has shipped and should arrive in Iowa on the 4th of June







    Department of Psychology Colloquium, April 25

    ABSTRACT: Infancy and early childhood coincide with one of the most dynamic periods of brain development, plasticity, and learning. A key developmental process throughout this period is myelination, the establishment of the myelinated white matter, which facilitates rapid communication across the brain's eloquent networks and systems. Abnormalities in white matter development, leading to altered brain connectivity, are hypothesised to play an important role in many developmental, behavioral and neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism, ADHD, and others. Unfortunately, little is known about the patterns of brain growth and white matter myelination throughout early childhood; how these patterns relate to functional maturation; or how they may be involved in various disorders. In this talk, we will describe an MR imaging method for specifically investigating myelination, and detail results from an ongoing longitudinal study of early brain development in healthy, typically developing infants and toddlers. Specifically, we will demonstrate the normative patterns of white matter myelination, detail associations between myelination and functional connectivity (derived using resting-state fMRI), as well as correlations between myelination and behavioral and cognitive maturation.

     7T Magnet

    7T on schedule to be shipped on April 28.

     GE 7T Lecture Series, March 6, 2014

    Michael Zeineh, MD., PhD., Stanford University Medical Center

    • Title: IIBI Bench to Bedside: Ultra-High Resolution Imaging of the Hippocampus at 7T
    • Time: Thursday, March 6, 12:00-1:00pm
    • Where: Braley Auditorium, 01136 PFP
    • Download Flyer

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