Barley Grain Performs Well as Contrast Agent

Updated August 1, 2018

Research by Jun Xia, PhD, assistant professor of biomedical engineering, and Jonathan F. Lovell, PhD, associate professor of biomedical engineering, a joint program of the UB School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, shows that barley is an ideal and safe contrast agent for diagnosing swallowing disorders. “It’s really incredible. Here you have this common grain — it has been grown all over the world for thousands of years, and used to make tea, bread, beer — and we’re just now finding another use for it as a contrast agent for medical imaging,” Xia said.