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Research Faculty

Jody Tanabe, MD

Dr Tanabe’s research involves the development and use of fMRI techniques for neuroimaging. Active projects include:

  • Investigation of neural correlates of negative reinforcement learning and their relationship to negative affective states in substance dependence.
  • Use of a computational model of decision-making to test hypotheses about the role of fronto-striatal networks in the processing of magnitude compared to frequency information in substance dependent individuals.
  • Use of fMRI to examine the neural substrates of decision making in substance dependent adolescents.
  • Development of an accurate statistical map of memory activation in the hippocampus (and associated structures in the limbic system such as cingulate cortex) in older subjects.
  • Participation in a center grant to investigate the use of behavioral, neuroimaging, and computational methods to examine executive function.

Mark Brown, PhD

Dr. Brown’s interests are in using MR tools such as magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS – 1H and 31P), diffusion tensor imaging and tractography to study a variety of diseases. Current project involvement includes:

  • Spectroscopic determinations of neurotransmitters such as glutamate, glutamine, and GABA in autism and schizophrenia.
  • 1H MRS determination of muscle lipids and muscle mitochondrial function (via 31P MRS) in diabetics.
  • MRI and MRS correlates of cognitive function in SLE (lupus).
  • Longitudinal study of cerebral and neurocognitive function in HIV-Infected persons with a history of advanced disease on HAART.
  • MRS for quantification of liver fat in infancy.

Dr. Miao's research interests focus on developing novel radiolabeled peptides for cancer (melanoma, breast and prostate cancers) diagnosis and treatment. Specifically, we are using radiolabeled peptides to target G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) that are over-expressed on cancer cells for cancer detection and therapy. Radiolabeled peptides are attractive probes for cancer imaging and therapy due to their specific nanomolar binding with the GPCRs on cancer cells. Radiolabeled peptides can selectively deliver diagnostic and therapeutic radionuclides to cancer cells through peptide-receptor interactions for imaging and therapy. Hence, malignant tumors can be detected non-invasively by imaging modalities (SPECT or PET) through the collection of photons generated from diagnostic radionuclides. Moreover, malignant tumors can be effectively treated by targeted radiation yielded from therapeutic radionuclides delivered by peptides.  For more information on Dr. Miao's research, along with a list of publications, please click here​


Ann Scherzinger, PhD

Dr Scherzinger’s research interests include the use of US, MRI and CT to characterize abdominal tissue, adiposity and bone structure and the use of informatics for workflow enhancement and data mining. Active project involvement includes:

  • CT measures of the effect of COX inhibition during exercise on muscle metabolism in aging.
  • Correlation of liver adiposity by MRI with measures of insulin sensitivity in adolescence
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging for quantification of depot-specific adiposity and liver fat in infancy
  • Consistency of protocol definition on PACS and it’s effect on developing hanging protocols
  • CT measures of changes in trabecular and cortical bone density in response to exercise-induced weight loss in postmenopausal women


Sean Deoni, PhD

Thor Johnson, MD

Dr. Johnson's research interest include designing different chemotherapeutic combinations to use with embolization for liver cancer treatment. His ongoing expeperiments include the VX rabbit HCC model. His second laboratory research focus is developing method for stable percutaneous portal vein access. Dr. Johnson has patented a catheter design and is in discussion about development. Dr. Johnson is nearing the start of research studies in pigs. For more information on Dr. Johnson's research, along with a list of publications, please click here.​

Bob Ryu, MD

Justin Honce, MD

Justin Honce is an Assistant Professor of Radiology, Program Director for the Neuroradiology Fellowship, and Director of the UCDenver Clinical functional MRI  & Diffusion Tensor Imaging program at the University of Colorado. He has research interests in applying quantitative imaging to multiple sclerosis, neurodegenerative diseases such as parkinsonism and in substance dependent individuals, please click here​.

Samuel Chang, MD