News & Events

Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Medical Physics Live Discussion

"Who IS a medical Physicist?" Ask us anything about our careers, research goals, trends in medical physics or anything else you can dream of! We’re here to spread the word about how awesome it is to be a medical physicist and maybe inspire a few of you to join us someday!

What: Reddit Science “Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Medical Physics” Live Discussion.

When:  March 29, 2018, at 1:00 PM EST

Where: Please follow the link to participate in the Live Discussion:

We’re concerned with three areas of activity: clinical service and consultation, research and development, and teaching. The Science AMA Series participants are a group of passionate medical physicists working in clinical, industry, and research, who will shed light on the wonderful world of medical physics. Ask us anything!



Lafata Receives DCI Poster Award

(2018-03-29) Congratulations to Kyle Lafata, PhD Candidate (Advisor: Dr. FF Yin), on receiving the Duke Cancer Institute Poster award at the Radiation Oncology and Imaging Program Annual Retreat for the research titled "Deep Learning of Pulmonary Function from CT Images using Radiomic Filtering". This is a collaboration project between Duke Radiation Oncology and the Department of Mathematics. The study aims to develop a novel method for CT ventilation imaging based on radiomic filtering and deep convolutional neural networks (CNNs). Radiomic features are generalized as image filters, and interpreted as the first convolutional layer of a novel deep CNN. The other authors are: Jing Cai, Jian-Guo Liu (Mathematics and Physics), Kolby Sidhu (Radiation Oncology), and Fang-Fang Yin. 



New NIH U01 Grant Awarded

(2018-03-16) Congratulations Dr. Greg Palmer (Radiation Oncology) and his colleagues for being awarded a NIH U01 grant titled “Mitigators of Radiation-Induced Endovascular Injury: Targeting Tie2 and Thrombocytopenia.” This is a Collaborative Research award, and incorporates imaging studies to be conducted in the laboratory of Dr. Greg Palmer of Medical Physics. Together with Co-PI’s Dr. Nelson Chao (Medicine) and Dr. Chris Kontos (Medicine and Cardiology), Dr. Palmer (Radiation Oncology) will investigate irradiative injury to the vascular endothelium and a promising therapeutic, AKB-9785. AKB-9785 is a VE-PTP inhibitor that acts on the Ang-1/Tie2 pathway. Tie2 regulates vascular integrity and maturation and maintains endothelial barrier function. Irradiation and other trauma downregulates Tie2, causing vascular leakiness, inflammation, and other pathological effects. Previous studies with AKB-9785 and other small molecule drugs have shown that by inhibiting VE-PTP, vascular barrier function can be normalized. Dr. Palmer’s role in this collaboration is to quantify and analyze in vivo vascular leakiness and changes in vascular morphology. In vivo optical imaging is used because it allows subcellular information to be gathered. The challenge with optical imaging is that skin and tissue heavily attenuate light in the visible spectrum. To overcome this problem, Dr. Palmer is developing a lung window chamber that will allow him to directly visualize, in high resolution, the microvasculature and fluorescent signal. Fluorescently-labeled dextran injected through the tail vein is a method for analyzing vascular leak. After irradiation, the gap between endothelial cells (i.e. the leakiness) increases, causing more dextran to accumulate in the extravascular tissue. Finally, the quantification of the extravascular dextran signal and the vessel morphology allows him to objectively compare the therapeutic effects of AKB-9785 on radiation-induced injury.



IAEA Internship Acceptance

(2018-02-23) Congratulations to Steve Hyatt (MS 2018) on being awarded a yearlong IAEA Dosimetry and Medical Radiation Physics Section internship. During this time period, Steven will be living in Vienna, Austria. The internship is fully funded by the International Programs at Argonne National Laboratory, who administers an Internship Placement Program with the IAEA.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is an international organization, committed to promoting safe, secure, and peaceful uses of nuclear technology that contribute to international peace and promote sustainable development.


MRI Linac Lecture

(2018-02-23) Jan Lagendijk, PhD, Professor and Head of Radiation Oncology, Radiology, and Nuclear Medicine Physics at the Universitair Medisch Centrum (UMC) Utrecht visited the Duke University Medical Physics Graduate Program to deliver this month’s distinguished lecture. The talk commenced with Dr. Lagendijk discussing the limitations on present day’s radiation therapy work flow, which includes uncertainty in day-to-day positioning. He further discussed on how the MRI Linac (MRL) technology can potentially address some of these challenges and bring improvements to better tailor dose distribution in radiation therapy, such as with better tumor characterization, real-time response assessment, and continuous treatment plan adaptation. Dr. Lagendijk ended his lecture by emphasizing the importance of having radiation therapy treatment as a real time process. Immediately after the talk, he answered questions from students and faculty members during the townhall.

Martin Pomper, MD, PhD, Professor of Radiology and Director of Division of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging at the Johns Hopkins Medical School will deliver the last distinguished lecture for the academic year on March 22, 2018.