Lab Affiliation(s):
Catana Lab
Ciprian Catana
Areas of Expertise:
  • MRI/PET Imaging
  • Neuroimaging
  • Digital Image Analysis
Expected date of graduation:
May 25, 2014

Daniel Chonde

  • PhD


  • Health Sciences and Technology

Lab Affiliation(s): 

Catana Lab


Ciprian Catana

Top 3 Areas of Expertise: 

MRI/PET Imaging
Digital Image Analysis

Personal Statement: 

I have been working at the A.A. Martinos center on MR-PET related projects since 2008, shortly after the BrainPET was installed. A majority of my work has been performed on the BrainPET, an MR-compatible insert-based PET camera which operates inside of a Siemen's Magnetom 3T Tim Trio MRI. My early work included optimization of the system as well as performance/interference measurements. From there I began to work on an extensive package of Matlab based tools and a graphical user interface to assist in the reconstruction and optimization of PET data analysis using simultaneously acquired MR. These projects include: motion correction using both MR- and PET-based means, MR-based attenuation correction and derivation and placement of hardware attenuation maps, the development of a novel image-based PET radiotracer arterial-input funtion, to name a few. My over arching interests are to solidify simultaneous MR/PET imaging as a tool for both clinical and research applications. To this end I am interested in automation of advanced analytic techniques to make quantitative PET imaging simpler and the combination of both MR and PET data to create stronger biomarkers for diagnosis and response to therapy.

Expected date of graduation: 

May 25, 2014


Thesis Title: 

"Improved PET Data Quantification in Simultaneous MR-PET Imaging of Glioblastoma"

Thesis Abstract: 

Recently, integrated MR-PET systems have become available for clinical use. By combining the high spatial resolution and superior soft-tissue contrast of MR, with the picomolar sensitivity, quantitative capabilities and wide array of tracers of PET, this new technology has the potential to benefit patients and provide insights that were previously unattainable in standalone systems. Simultaneous measurement of PET and MR parameters can provide complementary information for a more complete assessment of disease and can also be used for cross validation and calibration of measurements. To take full advantage of such a multi-modal system, accurate quantification of the data is necessary.  Due to the low spatial resolution of PET – which can be further reduced by external factors like patient motion – and the lack of anatomic detail, accurate quantification can be challenging. MR provides information that can be used to optimize PET quantification and analysis. In turn, the functional PET data can help target the MR analysis. An example of this inter-modal benefit is in glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) imaging where both MR and PET imaging are commonly used in the diagnosis, follow-up, and assessment of response to therapy.  No single imaging modality is capable of providing a complete assessment and mechanisms concerning the tumor’s response to treatments and its progression are poorly understood. Combining MR and PET imaging in a simultaneous manner will not only allow for better quantification of the PET data, but has the potential to provide insights into this complex and heterogeneous tumor. This work seeks to assess and optimize the reconstruction and quantification of the PET data in the BrainPET, a brain-dedicated MR-compatible PET insert scanner, for the study of GBM.

Top 5 Awards and honors (name of award, date received): 

NIBIB Neuroimaging Training Grant Fellow, 2012, 2013
ISMRM Magna Cum Laude Merit Award, 2012
MIT/Harvard/MGH Advanced Multimodal Neuroimaging Program Fellow, 2010
Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Prize Fellow, 2007
Ashford Fellow, 2007

5 Recent Papers: 

Bowen SL, Byars LG, Michel CJ, Chonde DB, Catana C. Influence of the partial volume effect correction method on brain kinetic modelling from OSEM reconstructed dynamic PET images. Phys Med Biol. 2013 Sep 20;58(20):7081-7106

Schroeder FA, Chonde DB, Riley MM, Moseley CK, Granda ML, Wilson CM, Wagner FF, Zhang YL, Holson EB, Haggarty SJ, Hooker JM. FDG-PET imaging reveals local brain glucose utilization is altered by class I histone deacetylase inhibitors. Neurosci Lett. 2013 Aug 29;550:119-24

Chonde DB*, Abolmaali N, Arabasz G, Guimaraes AR, Catana C. Effect of MRI Acoustic Noise on Cerebral Fludeoxyglucose Uptake in Simultaneous MR-PET Imaging. Invest Radiol. 2013 May;48(5):302-12

Ciesienski KL, Yang Y, Ay I, Chonde DB, Loving GS, Rietz TA, Catana C, Caravan P. Fibrin-targeted PET probes for the detection of thrombi. Mol Pharm. 2013 Mar 4;10(3):1100-10

Uppal R, Ciesienski KL, Chonde DB, Loving GS, Caravan P. Discrete Bimodal Probes for Thrombus Imaging. J Am Chem Soc. 2012 Jul 4;134(26):10799-802

Contact Information:
149 13th Street
Bldg 149 Rm 1.304A
(617) 643-4891