Graduate Programs - USA
The University of Pennsylvania has ongoing programs in the use of positron and single photon emitting isotopes for use in biomedical research and diagnostic imaging. These programs are run in collaboration between the Departments of Neurology (Cerebrovascular Research Center) and Radiology (Division of Nuclear Medicine) and are supported by basic research efforts in radiochemistry, radionuclide production, physics and instrumentation of medical imaging systems. Resources include a JSW BC3015 cyclotron and associated radiochemistry and radionuclide production facilities, physics and instrumentation laboratories as well as state-of- the-art PET and SPECT scanners.

Specific research interests include the following:
  • Radiochemistry - Synthesis and chemistry of radiolabeled precursors containing O-15, N-13, C-11 and F-18, fluorine chemistry, investigation of uses of generator produced positron emitting isotopes of Ga-68 and Cu-62, the use of ultrasound in radiochemical reactions, and the development of labeled neuroreceptor ligands containing cyclotron produced positron emitters or single photon emitting isotopes (I-123 andTc-99m).
  • Physics and Instrumentation - Development of new imaging systems and new scanner hardware and software, as well as image analysis and modeling software.
  • Biomedical Applications - Metabolism, blood flow and neuroreceptor quantification in the normal and abnormal brain. Clinical and research interests include stroke, Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease, schizophrenia, brain tumors, head trauma, epilepsy, drug abuse and sleep disorders.

    At present a degree granting program does not exist, however, positions are available for Penn undergraduate student independent research projects and at the post graduate level.

    If interested, the following research directors can be contacted:
    Martin Reivich, M.D., Neurology
    Richard Ehrenkaufer, Ph.D., Positron Isotope Radiochemistry, Neuroreceptor Ligands
    Robert Mach, Ph.D., Positron Isotope Radiochemistry, Neuroreceptor Ligands
    Cerebrovascular Research Center
    University of Pennsylvania
    429 Johnson Pavilion
    Philadelphia, PA 19104-6063

    Abass Alavi, M.D., Nuclear Medicine
    Hank Kung, Ph.D., SPECT and PET Radiopharmaceutical Development
    Joel Karp, Ph.D., Physics and Instrumentation
    Department of Radiology
    University of Pennsylvania
    429 Johnson Pavilion
    Philadelphia, PA 19104-4283