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Dr. Kathleen Schmainda Receives Grant to Use AI and Advanced MRI Methods to Identify Brain Tumors

Kathleen Schmainda, PhDKathleen M. Schmainda, PhD, professor of biophysics, was awarded a five-year, $2.7 million new R01 grant titled “New treatment monitoring biomarkers for brain tumors using multiparametric MRI with machine learning” from the National Cancer Institute.

This project will develop novel multiparametric MRI biomarkers capable of distinguishing high-grade brain tumor from treated non-tumor tissue within areas of contrast-enhancement, one of the most difficult and important challenges in neuro-oncology today. The technology will also precisely identify infiltrating brain tumor within peritumoral edema, which is not currently possible using standard MRI. Powered by recent advances in machine learning, this approach has the potential to cause a fundamental shift in the treatment management of patients with brain tumors, ultimately resulting in improved outcomes.

Dr. Schmainda is joined by an expert team of co-investigators at MCW including Dr. Elizabeth Cochran, professor of pathology; Dr. Jennifer Connelly, associate professor of neurology; Dr. Christopher Kleefisch, assistant professor of radiology; Dr. Brent Logan, professor of biostatistics; and Dr. Wade Mueller, professor of neurosurgery; as well as industrial partner Imaging Biometrics LLC, a subsidiary of IQ-AI Ltd. Foundational to this effort are the members of Dr. Schmainda’s lab, which include Dr. Mona Al-Gizawiy, Melissa Prah, and Cathy Marszalkowski in the Department of Biophysics and Biomedical Engineering PhD graduate student Robert Wujek.