UCSF's MRI Technology Tops Smithsonian’s List of Cancer Curing Advancements


The following was written by Sarah J. Nelson, Ph.D., Co-Chair of the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, Director of the Center for Non-Invasive Imaging and Metabolomics and the Surbeck Laboratory of Advanced Imaging, and Margaret Hart Surbeck Distinguished Professor in the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging

In honor of October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Smithsonian Magazine published an article documenting ten ways in which scientists have come closer to defeating cancer. “Take That, Cancer!” reveals how progress continues to be made in moving toward a cure for the disease. UCSF Radiology earned the second spot on the list, highlighting a new technology that is breaking barriers for cancer research.

"It helps to be able to see inside cancer cells: A new MRI technology, being developed at the University of California at San Francisco, could give physicians a better idea of whether or not a particular treatment for tumors is working."

While today’s MRI scans effectively confirm the presence of tumors in the human body, they fail to show radiologists what is happening inside of those tumors. But, not for long. My research team and collaborators at UCSF have developed new MRI technologies that will provide radiologists with images showing an inside-look at cancer cells. The medical imaging scans from this technology will reveal whether the cells are growing or dying, informing physicians how the patient is reacting to treatment and whether or not that treatment is working.

See this quick video from SmartPlanet, which discusses and demonstrates the methodology and use of this state-of-the-art MRI advancement:

For more information on this MRI technology, please see here.