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From Zeugmatography to MRI to the Nobel Prize and Beyond


January 31
12:00 pm
110, BEB
Sandy Bird

The Center for Biomedical Imaging - Lecture

Joseph A. Helpern, Ph.D.
Professor & Vice Chairman for Research
Department of Radiology & Radiological Science
Professor of Neuroscience
CoEE Endowed Chair in Brain Imaging
Director, Center for Biomedical Imaging
Medical University of South Carolina

"From Zeugmatography to MRI to the
Nobel Prize and Beyond"

The impact of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) in medicine has been compared with the development of the x-ray. Paul C. Lauterbur, who shared the 2003 Nobel Prize with Sir Peter Mansfield in Physiology or Medicine for its development, first proposed to call it "Zeugmatography". It didn't catch on. For the first few years it was called "Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Imaging", but that was quickly supplanted by the more patient friendly "Magnetic Resonance Imaging". As with the naming of this technology, there was controversy and intrigue associated with the eventual awarding of the Nobel Prize. Raymond Damadian, an MD who believed that he was the true inventor of the technology, was overlooked by the Nobel committee. But wait, was the idea really his? This lecture will trace some of the rumors and anecdotes related to the history of MRI interleaved with the personal experience of the speaker.

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