Shuai Leng, Ph.D., investigates the imaging techniques and clinical applications of computerized tomography (CT) in diagnosis and image-guided therapy. His research area includes image reconstruction, image quality assessment, radiation dosimetry, dose reduction, and dual energy and multienergy CT. He has led the development of these techniques and deployment in the clinical practice.
Dr. Leng is also researching new imaging techniques, such as photon-counting-detector-based multienergy CT, dynamic (4-D) CT, and phase-contrast CT, to expand the application of X-ray and CT imaging to new areas.
- Image reconstruction. Dr. Leng investigates analytical and iterative reconstruction algorithms for diagnostic CT and cone beam CT for special scanning geometries and to address various nonideal scenarios. He also works on compressed-sensing-based algorithms for various clinical areas, such as using dynamic CT and multienergy CT to reduce radiation dose, improve temporal resolution or reduce image artifact.
- Dual energy CT and photon-counting-detector-based multienergy CT. Dr. Leng is researching development and clinical adoption of dual energy CT in various areas and diseases, such as renal stone characterization, gout, bone edema, breast imaging and metal artifact reduction. His recent research focuses on photon-counting-detector-based CT to reduce radiation dose and explore novel applications.
- CT dosimetry and dose reduction. CT dosimetry and dose reduction has been one focus of Dr. Leng's research and clinical activities. He investigates radiation dose reduction in various clinical areas including neuro, body, vascular, cardiac and intervention, without sacrificing clinical outcomes. He also has interest in developing new dosimetry metrics such as size-specific dose estimates (SSDE).
- Task-based image quality assessment and model observer. To answer the fundamental question of how low can scientists go with radiation dose in CT exams without compromising clinical diagnosis, Dr. Leng has been researching task-based image quality assessment methods. Specifically, he is investigating development and validation of various model observers to that of human observers in tasks including lesion detection with known location, lesion localization and detection with unknown location, and lesion shape discrimination.
- Dynamic (4-D) CT imaging. Dr. Leng has been working on dynamic CT in two areas: 4-D cone beam CT in image-guided intervention and image-guided radiation therapy, and 4-D CT in dynamic joint imaging to assess joint kinematics for early diagnosis of osteoarthritis. He is especially interested in development of imaging techniques, novel reconstruction algorithms, image segmentation and kinematic analysis.
Significance to patient care
CT has been widely used in almost all clinical areas to provide fast and noninvasive diagnoses of various diseases and to provide image guidance for treatment procedures.
Dr. Leng's research helps health care professionals perform CT scans to obtain maximal information at the lowest radiation dose, so accurate diagnosis and treatment can be achieved while minimizing any potential risk.
His research activities on novel technologies, such as multienergy and phase-contrast CT, will enable new diagnoses that cannot be accomplished with current imaging technology.
- Member and American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) representative,Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine Working Group 21 (Computed Tomography), 2014-present
- Member, 62B/MT-30 and PT62985 working groups, International Electrotechnical Commission, 2013-present
- Member, CT committee, AAPM, 2012-present