Research Topics

The Gordon Center is conducting work at the forefront of quantitative PET in brain, oncologic and cardiac imaging. This webpage summarizes some of the research performed in the Center in kinetic modeling of neurotransmission, cardiac perfusion and mitochondrial function, simultaneous PET-MR imaging, in-room PET monitoring of proton therapy, high sensitivity/resolution brain imaging, quantitative dual tracer PET and SPECT, and objective assessment of image quality for estimation and detection tasks. More information about our research areas can be found in the links below.

Image Generation and Clinical Assessment

Developing rigorous evaluation methodology for objective assessment of image quality for lesion detection and activity quantitation tasks.

PET-CT and SPECT Instrumentation

Advanced instrumentation is critical to collecting quality data. For example, the Gordon Center has two brain scanners, NeuroPET I and NeuroPET-CT II, that have been employed in brain imaging studies for tau imaging, and for monitoring proton therapy. A novel collimator for CeraSPECT is available for SPECT imaging of the brain. We also make custom cardiac and respiratory phantoms to study imaging with motion. To process the collected data, a new, powerful computer cluster has recently come online.

Multimodal MRI Research

The goals of this research are to develop a variety of image and motion analysis techniques to better understand the relationship between anatomy and function of the tongue during speech. The tongue plays an important role in eating, speaking, and breathing. Its function is compromised by disease and also by treatment, such as surgery or […]

Quantitative PET-MR Imaging

Developing novel quantitative methods for simultaneous whole-body (WB) PET-MR imaging, validating these methods in animal models and evaluating their clinical value, compared to PET-CT, in monitoring response to cancer therapy.

Machine Learning for Anatomical imaging

Machine learning can enhance MR and CT imaging through various means such as denoising, low-dose reconstruction, and task-based reconstruction. Unsupervised learning for medical image denoising without high-quality images Iterative Low-dose CT reconstruction with unsupervised manifold learning via k-sparse autoencoder Undersampled image reconstruction with computational efficient neural network Low-dose dual energy CT reconstruction via deep neural […]

Quantitative PET-CT and SPECT-CT

Topics range from absolute quantitation with novel scatter, attenuation, and randoms corrections in model-based iterative reconstructions both in PET-CT and PET-MR to quantitative imaging in non-traditional radioisotopes such as Y-86, and absolute quantitation of neurotransmitter densities in dynamic PET imaging.

Therapy Imaging Program (TIP)

TIP Mission: (1) To achieve the best proton therapy treatment through advanced imaging. (2) To support NCI proton therapy clinical trials at MGH and elsewhere using imaging as a biomarker

Pharmaco-Kinetic Modeling

Physical and physiological principles are used to analyze dynamic and metabolic processes (e.g. blood flow and oxygen metabolism) resulting in mathematical descriptions that predict the results of experiments in terms of physiologically relevant parameters.

Monitoring Radiotherapy with PET

Developing a novel approach for adaptive in-room Positron Emission Tomography (PET) monitoring of Proton Beam Therapy using endogenously generated positrons.

Radiochemistry Discovery and Multifunctional Nanomaterials

The overall research goal of the Radiochemistry Program is to synthesize novel positron emission tomography (PET) labeled compounds and radiopharmaceuticals for preclinical and clinical evaluations. Our research includes AD imaging, multi-step chemistry with short-lived radionuclides, flow radiochemistry, advanced radiochemical reactions, and more.

Precision Neuroscience & Neuromodulation Program

The Precision Neuroscience & Neuromodulation Program at MGH-Harvard Medical School, led by Dr. Emiliano Santarnecchi, operates at the intersection of clinical research, cognitive neuroscience and neuroimaging.