My laboratory is engaged in developing and validating magnetic resonance (MR) imaging techniques that will ultimately be clinically useful in the diagnosis and management of Alzheimer's disease and related disorders. The laboratory is located in the Diagnostic Radiology MRI Research building. Several research directions are being pursued at this time.
We develop and validate image-processing algorithms for measuring changes in brain morphology over time from serial structural MRI studies. We also study brain biochemistry with in vivo MR spectroscopy, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of mental task activation, and brain metabolism with Position Emission Tomography (PET). Our clinical imaging research is tightly integrated into NIH funded longitudinal clinical and epidemiological research projects in normal aging, Alzheimer's disease, and other dementias at Mayo (the Mayo Alzheimer's Disease Patient Registry and Alzheimer's Disease Research Center).
We also collaborate with a number of investigators outside Mayo, and this laboratory is the Imaging Center for several large national multi-site studies.
In addition to human imaging research, we also collaborate with investigators at Mayo and the University of Minnesota on high field MRI of Alzheimer's amyloid plaques in transgenic mice. Goals of this project are to develop methods to accurately visualize Alzheimer's amyloid plaques in vivo in transgenic mice, to accurately measure disease progression over time with MR, and to develop plaque-specific MR contrast agents.