My research focus is on advancing the technology of nuclear medicine imaging, a non-invasive, in vivo, functional molecular imaging modality. The goal is to provide accurate and cost effective imaging solutions to support biomedical applications such as early disease diagnosis, early treatment assessment, and short development cycle of new drugs.
My research projects are in three areas. One is about improving the quality of nuclear medicine imaging systems, namely positron emission tomography (PET), and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), through accurate modeling, and therefore compensating, of the physical factors involved in the radiation signal detection process. One example is that we developed a probability density function based PET system matrix derivation method, and implemented the method through Monte Carlo simulation on UB’s high performance computing clusters. The method provides a systematic and comprehensive scheme for modeling any nuclear medicine imaging systems.
The second area of my research is about developing multiple imaging functionalities on top of existing nuclear medicine imaging systems or on a platform with shared system components. The advantage of this strategy includes the synergetic benefits of a multiple modality system, and the cost saving from sharing resources. An example project is that we developed an add-on SPECT (single photon emission computed tomography) on an existing PET (positron emission tomography) scanner. This allows the PET detector system be used for performing both PET and SPECT imaging studies with the combined libraries of PET and SPECT radiopharmaceuticals.
My third research area is about developing effective imaging protocols for applications using animal PET and other imaging systems. This usually involves collaboration with researchers in other specialties.