Our team of MRI Scientists works on the development of new imaging techniques and on the investigation of magnetic resonance signal generation in biological tissues. We are physicists within the departments of Physics and Astronomy, Pediatrics, and Radiology. Our specific interests are MR signal formation in the presence of magnetically inhomogeneous tissues, such as nerve fibres or blood vessels and the application of our new MRI techniques to the investigation of tissue damage and repair in brain injury due to preterm birth,  multiple sclerosis, and traumatic brain injury. We collaborate with various researchers from the departments of Physics and Astronomy, Pediatrics, Radiology, Neurology, Pathology, and internationally.

New software: DECAES for rapid myelin water and luminal water analysis

We are pleased to present DECAES, a free software tool written in Julia. It computes myelin water and luminal water maps in under one minute. You can find a paper on the method here and the software can be found on Jon Doucette’s Github page. Please contact us if you are interested in MWI and we will be happy to help with data acquisition sequences and analysis.

QSM toolbox by Christian Kames is available on github

You can find Christian’s RTS algorithm and implementations of other popular algorithms here: https://github.com/kamesy/QSM.m

Click here for an overview of MRI research at UBC.


2021: NSERC Discovery Grant renewed

2020: CIHR Grant on Concussion in Ice Hockey

Our proposal A prospective and longitudinal investigation of concussive and subconcussive mild traumatic brain injury mechanisms in ice hockey is funded by CIHR. We work with co PIs Lyndia Wu and Paul van Donkelaar on the characterization of hits to the head with advanced MRI, impact sensors in mouthguards, and neuropsychological tests.

2019: CIHR Grant on Tissue Damage and Disease Progression in MS

Our proposal Imaging markers for tissue damage and disease progression in MS was funded by CIHR for 5 years.

Mapping cerebrovascular health

We have a gas control system (RespirAct™, Thornhill Medical) that allows us to map cerebrovascular reactivity using our MRI scanners. We can create maps of the brains vascular health that were shown to be useful in a wide range of conditions, such as  Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, or traumatic brain injury.  Please contact us at the email address below for further details.

Selected recent publications

Recovering SWI-filtered phase data using deep learning Kames C, Doucette J, Birkl C, Rauscher A. Magn Reson Med. 2022 Feb;87(2):948-959.

Non-negative least squares computation for in vivo myelin mapping using simulated multi-echo spin-echo T2 decay data. Wiggermann V, Vavasour IM, Kolind SH, MacKay AL, Helms G, Rauscher A. NMR Biomed. 2020 Dec;33(12):e4277

DECAES – DEcomposition and Component Analysis of Exponential Signals. Doucette J, Kames C, Rauscher A. Z Med Phys. 2020 Nov;30(4):271-278.

Birkl C, Doucette J, Fan M, Hernández-Torres E, Rauscher A.  Myelin water imaging depends on white matter fiber orientation in the human brain. Magn Reson Med. 2021 Apr;85(4):2221-223

Birkl C, Birkl-Toeglhofer AM, Kames C, Goessler W, Haybaeck J, Fazekas F, Ropele S, Rauscher A.: The influence of iron oxidation state on quantitative MRI parameters in post mortem human brain.  Neuroimage. 2020 Jun 23;220:117080.

Y. Zhang, A. Rauscher, C. Kames and A.M. Weber Quantitative Analysis of Punctate White Matter Lesions in Neonates Using Quantitative Susceptibility Mapping and R2* Relaxation American Journal of Neuroradiology June 2019

Birkl C, Birkl-Toeglhofer AM, Endmayr V, Hoftberger R, Kasprian G, Krebs C, Haybaeck J, Rauscher A.  The influence of brain iron on myelin water imaging.  Neuroimage. 2019 May 17.

Kor D, Birkl C, Ropele S, Doucette J, Xu T, Wiggermann V, Hernández-Torres E, Hametner S, Rauscher A. The role of iron and myelin in orientation dependent R2 * of white matter NMR Biomed. 2019 Apr 30:e4092.

Doucette J, Wei L, Hernández-Torres E, Kames C, Forkert ND, Aamand R, Lund TE, Hansen B, Rauscher A. Rapid solution of the Bloch-Torrey equation in anisotropic tissue: Application to dynamic susceptibility contrast MRI of cerebral white matter. Neuroimage. 2019 Jan 15;185:198-207.

Kames C, Wiggermann V, Rauscher A. Rapid two-step dipole inversion for susceptibility mapping with sparsity priors.  Neuroimage. 2018 Feb 15;167:276-283.

Hernández-Torres E, Kassner N, Forkert ND, Wei L, Wiggermann V, Daemen M, Machan L, Traboulsee A, Li D, Rauscher A. Anisotropic cerebral vascular architecture causes orientation dependency in cerebral blood flow and volume measured with dynamic susceptibility contrast magnetic resonance imaging. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. 2017 Mar;37(3):1108-1119.

Wright AD, Jarrett M, Vavasour I, Shahinfard E, Kolind S, van Donkelaar P, Taunton J, Li D, Rauscher A. Myelin Water Fraction Is Transiently Reduced after a Single Mild Traumatic Brain Injury–A Prospective Cohort Study in Collegiate Hockey Players. PLoS One. 2016 Feb 25;11(2):e0150215.