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University of Iowa News Release

Feb. 17, 2005

UI Engineering Caterpillar Lecture Scheduled Feb. 24

Dr. Richard L. Ehman of the Mayo Clinic Department of Radiology, Rochester, Minn. will deliver a Caterpillar Colloquium Series Lecture from 12:30-1:20 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24 in the Long Classroom, Room 3505, Seamans Center for the Engineering Arts and Sciences at the University of Iowa.

The lecture, focusing on the use of MRI-based methods to investigate the mechanical properties of tissues and hosted by the UI College of Engineering Department of Biomedical Engineering, is free and open to the public. The talk is titled "Magnetic Resonance Elastography by Direct Visualization of Propagating Acoustic Shear Waves."

Dr. Ehman will discuss how he and his colleagues have applied MRE (Magnetic Resonance Elastography) to assess specimens of a variety of tissues, ranging in stiffness from lung to cartilage. He notes that human studies have demonstrated that it is feasible to apply MRE to quantitatively image the mechanical properties of skeletal muscles, gray and white matter in the brain, thyroid, kidney, liver and skin. His preliminary clinical studies have used MRE to observe changes in tissue mechanical properties in patients with breast, brain, and thyroid tumors, liver fibrosis and diffuse diseases of skeletal muscle. He says that MRE has potential as a diagnostic tool to non-invasively "palpate" regions of the body that are beyond the reach of the physician's hand and that it provides a new quantitative tool for characterizing the viscoelastic properties of tissue.

Dr. Ehman, who received his M.D. from the University of Saskatchewan in 1979, joined the Mayo Clinic staff in 1985. He divides his time between clinical practice, education and research, with his main clinical focus on body, musculoskeletal and cardiovascular MRI. He has published more than 140 peer-reviewed scientific papers, holds more than 20 patents and is currently principal investigator on two National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants.

In 1995 he was awarded the Gold Medal of the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM), and served as the organization's president in 2002-2003. He is a Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering and the American College of Radiology. A member of the Mayo Clinic Board of Governors, he served as a full member of the NIH Radiology and Nuclear Medicine Study Section from 1995-1999 and chaired the section from 2002-2004. He is an associate editor of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and an editorial board member of several other journals.

The Caterpillar Colloquium Series is made possible by grants awarded to the UI College of Engineering through the UI Foundation by the Caterpillar Foundation of Peoria, Ill. The grants comprise the Caterpillar Excellence Fund, which aids student, faculty and curriculum development in the College of Engineering.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. People requiring an accommodation in order to participate in this program are asked to contact in advance the UI College of Engineering Department of Biomedical Engineering at 319-335-5632.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Gary Galluzzo, 319-384-0009,