[Brainmap]: Rita Schmidt, PhD - Electric properties of biological tissues and materials: new perspective on functional MRI of the brain and designing MRI-viable metamaterials.

Thursday, January 18, 2018 - 15:00 to 16:00
149 13th Street (Building 149), Room 2204

Rita Schmidt, PhD
Weizmann Institute of Science
Rehovot, Israel

My talk will focus on two topics, linked by the interactions of RF fields inside the MR scanner. First, I will share an on-going research on the mapping of electrical properties, aimed at studying functional activity in the human brain. This includes a new computational technique for estimating electrical properties from an MR experiment alongside the implementation of fast acquisition techniques. I will also show a correlation between changes in the electrical conductivity and basic visual or motor activation paradigms. Next, I will discuss my second topic, the design of new hybrid metamaterials for MRI with the potential to effectively "zoom-in" into specific brain regions. By combining high permittivity dielectric materials with conducting metasurfaces, the structures produced are both flexible and compact. This novel concept enables MRI-viable metamaterials that can be integrated into the tight setup of clinical MRI examinations and boost the sensitivity. In-vivo results from ultrahigh (7T) fields will be presented.