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Dara L. Kraitchman, D.V.M., M.S., M.S.E.E., M.V.Sc., Ph.D.

Photo of Dr. Dara L. Kraitchman, D.V.M., M.S., M.S.E.E., M.V.Sc., Ph.D.

Cardiovascular Interventional Section Head

Professor of Radiology and Radiological Science

Research Interests: Interventional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques for minimally invasive treatment; Development of labeling techniques for cell tracking and drug/protein delivery; Non-invasive imaging for early diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease more


Dr. Dara Kraitchman is a Professor in the Johns Hopkins Medicine Department of Radiology and Radiological Science. Her research focuses on non-invasive imaging and minimally invasive treatment of cardiovascular disease. Dr. Kraitchman serves as the Cardiovascular Interventional Section Head within the department. Dr. Kraitchman is also co-Director of the Center for Image-Guided Animal Therapy (CIGAT), which provides state-of-the-art imaging and minimally invasive diagnostic and therapeutic options for pets.

The Kraitchman lab developed the first technique to provide radiopaque labeling of stem cells for x-ray fluoroscopic delivery and CT imaging of stem cell persistence for cardiac and peripheral arterial disease applications.

Dr. Kraitchman received her undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. She earned her M.S.E. and Ph.D. in bioengineering from University of Pennsylvania. She also completed her V.M.D. in veterinary medicine from University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Kraitchman joined the Johns Hopkins faculty in 1996.

She is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology and International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and a Distinguished Investigator in the Academy of Radiology. more


  • Cardiovascular Interventional Section Head
  • Center for Image-Guided Animal Therapy Co-Director
  • Professor of Radiology and Radiological Science
  • Professor of Molecular and Comparative Pathobiology

Departments / Divisions



  • B.S., Carnegie Mellon University (Pennsylvania) (1984)
  • M.S.E.E., Northwestern University (Illinois) (1986)
  • M.V.Sc., University of Illinois (Illinois) (1988)
  • D.V.M., University of Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania) (1992)
  • M.S., University of Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania) (1993)
  • Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania) (1996)

Additional Training

  • Veterinarian, Pennsylvania State Board of Veterinary Medicine (1992)
  • Accredited Veterinarian, USDA-APHIS (1993)
  • Veterinarian, Maryland State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners (1996)
Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland, 1983, Electrical Engineering; National Institute of Health, Bethesda, MD, 1997, Individual National Research Service Award Fellowship

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Kraitchman's research interests are concentrated on non-invasive imaging and minimally invasive treatment of cardiovascular disease. She has been actively involved in developing new methods to image myocardial function and perfusion using MRI. Current research interests are aimed at determining the optimal timing and method of administration of mesenchymal stem cells to regenerate infarcted myocardium using non-invasive MR fluoroscopic delivery and imaging. MRI and radiolabeling techniques include novel MR and radiotracer stem cell labeling methods to determine the location, quantity and biodistribution of stem cells after delivery as well as to noninvasively determine the efficacy of these therapies in acute myocardial infarction and peripheral arterial disease.

Recently, the first technique to provide radiopaque labeling of stem cells for x-ray fluoroscopic delivery and CT imaging of stem cell persistence for cardiac and peripheral arterial disease applications has been developed. These labeling techniques have been developed using FDA-approved contrast agents in large animal preclinical models of cardiovascular disease using clinical MR, radionuclide and CT imaging scanners for rapid translation to the clinical realm. She is also focused on the development of new animal models of human disease for noninvasive imaging studies and the development of promising new therapies in clinical trials for companion animals.


The Kraitchman lab concentrates on clinical translation of minimally invasive imaging technology that uses new molecular imaging and nanomedicine techniques to enable stem cell tracking and enhanced engraftment. Recent research efforts in the lab have concentrated on developing x-ray visible stem cells for cardiovascular applications. Using multimodality imaging techniques, the research team confirms stem cell viability with PET and bioluminescence. Then, using conventional devices currently in clinical trials, Kraitchman's researchers image and target stem cells to the heart directly using MRI fluoroscopy with a specialized MRI-compatible device or x-ray fluoroscopic imager.

Lab Website: Dara Kraitchman Laboratory

Technology Expertise Keywords

Stem cell, veterinary imaging, cardiovascular

Selected Publications

View all on Pubmed

Kral BG, Kraitchman DL. "From mice to men: gene therapy's future for treatment of myocardial infarction." Circ Cardiovasc Imaging. 2013 May 1;6(3):360-2. doi: 10.1161/CIRCIMAGING.113.000465.

Meyer BC, Brost A, Kraitchman DL, Gilson WD, Strobel N, Hornegger J, Lewin JS, Wacker FK. "Percutaneous punctures with MR imaging guidance: comparison between MR imaging-enhanced fluoroscopic guidance and real-time MR Imaging guidance." Radiology. 2013 Mar;266(3):912-9. doi: 10.1148/radiol.12120117.

Arifin DR, Kedziorek DA, Fu Y, Chan KW, McMahon MT, Weiss CR, Kraitchman DL, Bulte JW. "Microencapsulated cell tracking." NMR Biomed. 2013 Jul;26(7):850-9. doi: 10.1002/nbm.2894.

Lauer AM, El-Sharkawy AM, Kraitchman DL, Edelstein WA. "MRI acoustic noise can harm experimental and companion animals." J Magn Reson Imaging. 2012 Sep;36(3):743-7. doi: 10.1002/jmri.23653.

Kedziorek DA, Hofmann LV, Fu Y, Gilson WD, Cosby KM, Kohl B, Barnett BP, Simons BW, Walczak P, Bulte JW, Gabrielson K, Kraitchman DL. "X-ray-visible microcapsules containing mesenchymal stem cells improve hind limb perfusion in a rabbit model of peripheral arterial disease." Stem Cells. 2012 Jun;30(6):1286-96. doi: 10.1002/stem.1096.

Activities & Honors


  • Distinguished Investigator, Academy of Radiology Research, 2012
  • Fellow, American College of Cardiology, 2008
  • Best Oral Abstract, Third place, Society of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance, 2003
  • Society of Computed Body Tomography and MR Contrast Award, 2000


  • Affiliate Faculty in Institute for Computation Medicine
  • Affiliate Faculty in Institute of Nanobiotechnology
  • American Heart Association
  • American Veterinary Medical Association
  • Fellow of American College of Cardiology
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
  • International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine
  • Society of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance
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