MSBI Curriculum

The following courses are presently offered within the MSBI Program:

Core Courses

Principles of MR Imaging
Physical Principles of CT, PET & SPECT Imaging
Imaging Probes for Nuclear and Optical Imaging
Principles of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Ultrasound
Image Processing and Analysis
Imaging Study Design
Imaging Laboratory

Electives*

MR Pulse Sequences
Cancer Imaging
Advanced Neurological Imaging
Vascular Imaging
Musculoskeletal Imaging
Abdominal Imaging
Supervised Research

*Note: Electives are subject to change based on student demand and instructor availability.  An elective may be cancelled if there is insufficient demand.

BI 201: Principles of MR Imaging

Instructor: Peder Larson, PhD
Term Offered: Fall
Classification: Core
Units: 4

Overview:  This course aims to teach the basic principles behind magnetic resonance imaging.  The topics taught will include: physics of magnetic resonance, including resonance, excitation, and relaxation; image formation with excitation pulses and gradients fields; image reconstruction via the Fourier Transform (including a review of the Fourier Transform); MRI scanner hardware, including magnets and coils; image contrast; artifacts due to flow, motion, and field variations.  Time-permitting, modern MRI techniques will also be covered, including fast imaging methods and multi-coil configurations.

BI 202: Physical Principles of CT, PET, and SPECT Imaging

Instructor: Youngho Seo, PhD
Term Offered: Fall
Classification: Core
Units: 4

Overview:  This course is designed to provide the basic knowledge base to understand the physical principles of x-ray computed tomography (CT), positron emission tomography (PET), and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT). Through “real” examples of how x-ray CT, PET, and SPECT are used in medical diagnosis and disease management, we will combine physical and mathematical foundations with actual applications for thorough understanding of the principles of these imaging techniques. Principles and developments of advanced CT, PET, and SPECT imaging technologies will be also discussed as integral parts of this course.

BI 203: Imaging probes for Nuclear and Optical Imaging

Instructors: Henry VanBrocklin, PhD
Term Offered: Winter
Classification: Core
Units: 3

Overview:  
As nuclear and optical imaging requires introduction of exogenous tracers to highlight the desired molecular pathway, this course will introduce the basic principles of these imaging modalities and cover all aspects of probe development. The following topics will be highlighted: the fundamental principles of PET, SPECT and optical imaging, isotope production, chemistry of PET, SPECT and optical imaging agents, molecular imaging in cell and molecular biology and applications of molecular imaging in normal tissue and disease characterization as well as drug development. Elements of probe development from target selection, biological activity, preclinical models and testing, and translation to humans including regulatory aspects will be covered.

BI 204: Principles of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Ultrasound

Instructor: David Saloner, PhD; Viola Rieke, PhD
Term Offered: Winter
Classification: Core
Units: 3

Overview:  This course will introduce the physical principles of ultrasound and its interaction with tissue.  Ultrasound hardware and imaging modes, including Doppler flow imaging, will be explored and demonstrated through real world examples. Therapeutic ultrasound will subsequently be introduced.  Topics will include the effects of ultrasound and heating on tissue, acoustic modeling, bioheat transfer, treatment monitoring and feedback control.  Evolving therapeutic approaches, including ultrasound and heat mediated drug and gene delivery, will be introduced.

BI 205: Imaging Study Design

Instructor: Nola Hylton, PhD
Term Offered: Spring
Classification: Core
Units: 3

Overview:  This course will introduce principles of clinical study design as they apply to imaging studies for disease screening, diagnosis and treatment assessment.  The course will cover aspects of imaging studies related to statistical design, imaging methodologies and implementation, technology standardization and quality assessment, patient recruitment, enrollment and coordination of clinical care, regulatory aspects and cost factors. These topics will be compared and contrasted for different imaging modalities, disease systems and clinical outcomes.

BI 209: Imaging Laboratory - MR, CT, PET, & SPECT

Instructors: Duan Xu, PhD; Youngho Seo, PhD
Term Offered: Fall
Classification: Core
Units: 2

Overview:  This laboratory course accompanies two core lecture courses BI 201 (Principles of MR Imaging) and BI 202 (Physical Principles of CT, PET, and SPECT Imaging) that are offered in the same quarter. The goal of this laboratory course is to equip students with hands-on experience in the basic operational techniques of MR, CT, PET, and SPECT equipment. The data from the laboratory will be analyzed for the investigation of basic scanner performance parameters. Attendance and laboratory reports will be required.

BI 211: MR Pulse Sequences

Instructor: Roland Krug, PhD
Term Offered: Winter
Classification: Elective
Units: 3

Overview:  This course will focus on the practical implementation of the basic MR principles acquired in BI 201. During the course, a basic MR pulse sequence will be developed using GE’s programming language EPIC (Environment for Pulse programming In C). Every week, there will be one lecture with an introduction to a module and one session at the scanner implementing this module. At the end of the course, the participant should be familiar with all parts of the scanner and should be able to run and modify pulse sequences. Some basics knowledge of the C programming language is helpful but not required.

BI 220: Advanced Neurological Imaging

Instructors: Sarah Nelson, PhD
Term Offered: Spring
Classification: Elective
Units: 3

Overview:  This course on advanced Neurological imaging will introduce state of the art techniques used for diagnoses, clinical trials, and in neuroscience studies of the brain. The course will include structural and functional brain mapping techniques including morphometry, diffusion MRI fiber tracking, functional MRI, perfusion MRI, and MEG. Secondly we will introduce quantitative techniques that are used to improved characterization of neurological tissue including MR relaxometry, Magnetization Transfer Ration imaging, Diffusion Tensor Imaging, Phase Imaging and MR Spectroscopic Imaging.

BI 230: Vascular Imaging

Instructors: David Saloner, PhD
Term Offered: Winter
Classification: Elective
Units: 3

Overview:  This course will build on the fundamental principles developed in the core imaging courses.  The presentation of cardiovascular disease will be outlined and the role of imaging in elucidating the presence and extent of different disease conditions will be defined.  The relative capabilities of different imaging modalities in application to assessment of these conditions will be discussed.  The role of imaging during interventional procedures, either utilizing devices or for delivery of pharmacologics, will be considered.  The capabilities of each modality in elucidating geometric morphology and functional performance will be covered.  The ability to determine underlying mechanisms of cardiovascular dysfunction utilizing imaging tools will be explored.  This will include identification of the composition of the vascular wall and of cardiac structures, the presentation and impact of hemodynamics, the role of inflammation, and the link of these descriptors to the evolution of cardiovascular disease.  An analysis of common imaging artifacts will be included, and the use of postprocessing tools for improved visualization will be presented.

BI 240: Musculoskeletal Imaging

Instructor: Galateia Kazakia, PhD
Term Offered: Spring
Classification: Elective
Units: 3

Overview:  This course will utilize the basics learn in the core imaging courses, and explore the specific theoretical and experimental needs for imaging the musculo-skeletal system and tissues. It will focus on tissue composition, system function, and address quantitative imaging aspects that link imaging metrics to biochemistry, biomechanics, function and movement. The course will explore the role of imaging and image processing in understanding, and studying, musculo-skeletal degeneration, aging, injury, as well as regenerative strategies, and therapeutic approaches.

BI 250: Abdominal and Pelvic Imaging

Instructors: Susan Noworolski, PhD
Term Offered: Spring
Classification: Elective
Units: 3

Overview:  This course will focus on imaging of abdominal and pelvic diseases and disorders, building on the fundamental principles developed in the core imaging courses.  Particular challenges of imaging in the body will be covered along with methods to address them. The course will cover technical fundamentals such as MR spectroscopy of the body, dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging, and CT perfusion. Additionally, clinical applications will be presented and will include fatty liver disease, prostate cancer and other diseases and disorders of the abdomen and pelvis.

BI 260: Image Processing and Analysis I

Instructors: Duygu Tosun, PhD
Term Offered: Fall
Classification: Core
Units: 2

Overview:  This course covers basic digital image processing techniques used for the analysis of images. Topics include spatial and frequency domain filtering (for improving the visibility of significant structures as well as a pre-processing step for subsequent automated processing), image restoration, introduction to wavelet image processing, morphological operators (e.g. erosion, dilation) and their uses (e.g. boundary extraction, extraction of connected components), image segmentation and pattern recognition. 30% of the course grade is based on projects which require students to program image processing techniques and apply them to images (usually of their choosing). Students need a mathematical background and computer programming experience is strongly recommended.

BI 265: Image Processing and Analysis II

Instructors: Xiaojuan Li, PhD
Term Offered: Winter
Classification: Core
Units: 3

Overview:  This course features practical image processing tasks that are commonly performed with medical images.  Examples include the analysis of functional MRI data, cardiovascular function analysis and image registration. Each week, a new application will be introduced starting from background theory and finishing with hands on image processing.  Students are required to have completed BI 260 prior to taking this course.

BI 270: Cancer Imaging   

Instructor: Michael Evans, PhD
Term Offered: Spring
Classification: Elective
Units: 3

Overview:  This course will utilize the basics learn in the core imaging courses and address the application of different imaging methods to inform on cancer. Molecular and genetic factors leading to cancer will be introduced.  Aspects of the disease that lend themselves to anatomic, functional and molecular imaging will be discussed. The use of established and emerging approaches to image cancer in cell, tissue and animal models will be presented. Major cancer types and the imaging methods most commonly used in the clinic will then be presented and discussed by established UCSF clinicians.