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Hanzhang Lu, Ph.D.

Photo of Dr. Hanzhang Lu, Ph.D.
  • Chief, NeuroFunction Section, MR Research Division, Department of Radiology
  • Professor of Radiology and Radiological Science

Research Interests

Magnetic resonance imaging; Cerebral blood volume; Cerebral blood flow; Oxygen extraction fraction; Cerebral oxygen metabolism; Cerebrovascular reactivity; Blood-brain barrier permeability; Vascular compliance; Normal brain function and physiology; Aging and neurodegenerative diseases; Cerebrovascular diseases ...read more

Background

Hanzhang Lu is an internationally recognized leader in physiological MRI. He has published over 180 peer-reviewed journal articles with an h-index of 55 and a total citation of >10,000. He is an associate editor of Frontiers in Neuroscience — Brain Imaging Methods, and he serves on the editorial boards of NeuroImage and NMR in Biomedicine. He has also been a guest editor of special issues on physiological MRI.

Dr. Lu was a charter member of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) medical imaging review panel, and he chaired several NIH study sections — including one on biomedical imaging technology — and high-end instrumentation and special emphasis panels.

Dr. Lu’s research focuses on development of MRI techniques to understand brain physiology and pathophysiology. He is a fellow of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM), a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and a distinguished investigator for the Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research.

Hanzhang Lu is the secretary of the ISMRM perfusion study group, he has served on the ISMRM’s Annual Meeting Program Committee and Trainee Stipend Committee, and he was the program director of the ISMRM fMRI Study Group in 2011 and 2012. He was a lead organizer of the Brain at Work plenary session during the ISMRM annual meeting in Honolulu in 2017, and he chaired an ISMRM-sponsored workshop on functional MRI in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2014. He also chaired the organizing committee for the 2019 Imaging Cerebral Physiology Symposium.

In the Johns Hopkins Department of Radiology and Radiological Science, Dr. Lu serves as chief of the neurofunction section in the MR research division. He is also the chair of the RORA Oversight Committee, and he has been a member of the department’s committees on CDAC, the Lunch and Learn Lecture Series, research joint chiefs of staff, Research Day organizing and pilot grant review.

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Titles

  • Chief, NeuroFunction Section, MR Research Division, Department of Radiology
  • Professor of Radiology and Radiological Science

Departments / Divisions

Education

Degrees

  • Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (Maryland) (2004)
  • B.E., Shanghai Jiao Tong University (China) (1996)

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Lu’s research has been focused on the development of MRI techniques to understand brain physiology and their applications in brain diseases. He has previously developed novel MRI techniques to measure cerebral blood volume (CBV), brain oxygenation (OEF) and metabolism (CMRO2), cerebral blood flow (CBF), and cerebrovascular reactivity (CVR), which has been widely cited and used in the field.

Significant research contributions include:

  1. Developing the vascular-space-occupancy (VASO) functional MRI method for imaging cerebral blood volume changes during brain activation. This technique provides highly localized mapping of neural activity, enhances the understanding of the BOLD signal, and has been used to conduct quantitative functional MRI. In 2012, Neuroimage published a special issue to celebrate 20 years of fMRI and the VASO technique was included as one of the major developments in fMRI.
  2. Developing the widely used diffusion kurtosis imaging (DKI) technique to account for non-Gaussian diffusion of water in biologic systems.
  3. Developing non-invasive MRI techniques to measure the brain’s oxygen metabolism and this technique, known as the TRUST MRI, has become the benchmark technique in the field.
  4. Developing CO2/O2 gas-inhalation MRI for the measurement of cerebrovascular reactivity, which is an important biomarker of normal aging and cerebrovascular conditions and diseases.
  5. Improving the Arterial-Spin-Labeling (ASL) MRI for the assessment of brain perfusion, and developing ASL-based techniques for the measurement of blood-brain barrier permeability.
  6. Improving function MRI by accounting for physiological variations via normalization and calibration methods. 

Dr. Lu and his colleagues have applied the techniques he invented to a variety of clinical applications, including Alzheimer’s disease, cognitive aging, vascular dementia, multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injury, depression, schizophrenia, neonatal hypoxic ischemia, and drug addiction.

Lab Website: Hanzhang Lu

Selected Publications

View all on Pubmed

Lu H, Golay X, Pekar JJ, van Zijl PC. Functional magnetic resonance imaging based on changes in vascular space occupancy. Magn Reson Med. 2003;50(2):263-274.

Lu H, Ge Y. Quantitative evaluation of oxygenation in venous vessels using T2-Relaxation-Under-Spin-Tagging MRI. Magn Reson Med. 2008;60(2):357-63.

Lu H, Xu F, Rodrigue KM, Kennedy KM, Cheng Y, Flicker B, Hebrank AC, Uh J, Park DC. Alterations in cerebral metabolic rate and blood supply across the adult lifespan. Cereb Cortex. 2011;21(6):1426-1434.

Pascual JM, Liu P, Mao D, Kelly DI, Hernandez A, Sheng M, Good LB, Ma Q, Marin-Valencia I, Zhang X, Park JY, Hynan LS, Stavinoha P, Roe CR, Lu H. Triheptanoin for glucose transporter type I deficiency (G1D): modulation of human ictogenesis, cerebral metabolic rate, and cognitive indices by a food supplement. JAMA Neurol. 2014;71(10):1255-1265.

Lin Z, Sur S, Soldan A, Pettigrew C, Miller M, Oishi K, Bilgel M, Moghekar A, Pillai JJ, Albert M, Lu H. Brain oxygen extraction by MRI in older individuals: relationship to Apolipoprotein E genotype and amyloid burden. Radiology. 2019;292(1):140-148.

Academic Affiliations & Courses

Graduate Program Affiliation

Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program, Johns Hopkins University

Activities & Honors

Honors

  • Young Investigator Award, Gordon Research Conference on Brain Energy Metabolism and Blood Flow, 2004
  • UT Southwestern Endowed Scholar in Biomedical Research, UT Southwestern Medical Center, 2005
  • Friends of Alzheimer’s Disease Center Research Award, Alzheimer’s Disease Center, 2007
  • Program Director, Current Issues in Brain Function Study Group, International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 2011 - 2012
  • Appointed Charter Member, NIH Medical Imaging (MEDI) Study Section, 2013 - 2017
  • Chair, Organizing Committee of ISMRM-sponsored workshop on functional MRI Committee Member, Annual Meeting Program Committee of the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 2015 - 2018
  • Distinguished Investigator Award, Academy for Radiology and Biomedical Imaging Research, 2017
  • Fellow, International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 2018
  • Chair, NIH Biomedical Imaging Technology A (BMIT-A) Study Section, 2018
  • Fellow, American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering, 2019
  • Secretary-elect, ISMRM Perfusion Study Group, 2019
  • Chair, 4th Imaging Cerebral Physiology (ICP) Network Symposium, 2019
  • Chair, NIH High-end Instrumentation (HIE) Study Section, 2019

Memberships

  • International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine
  • Organization of Human Brain Mapping
  • American Society of Functional Neuroradiology (ASFNR)

Professional Activities

  • Program Director, Current Issues in Brain Function Study Group, International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 2011
  • Committee Member, Subcommittee on Trainee Stipend, International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 2010
  • Chair of the organizing committee, ISMRM-sponsored workshop on functional MRI, Charleston, SC, 2014
  • Committee Member, Annual Meeting Program Committee of the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 2015
  • Leading co-organizer, Plenary Session on “Brain at Work”, International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine Annual Meeting, Honolulu, HI, 2017
  • Chair of the organizing committee, Imaging Cerebral Physiology Network Symposium, Baltimore, MD, 2019
  • Executive Committee, Perfusion Study Group, International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 2019
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