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Thomas H. Mareci, Ph.D.
Thomas H. Mareci, Ph.D.
BME Graduate Faculty Status
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Office: LG-183, McKnight Brain Institute Lab: LG-152B, McKnight Brain Institute
D. Phil, Physical Chemistry, University of Oxford, England, 1982 Title: New Techniques in Fourier Transform Nuclear Magnetic Resonance. Supervisor: Professor Ray Freeman
M.S., Physics, University of Florida, 1979 Title: The Radial Distribution Function for Particles Interacting through an Attractive 1/R Potential. Supervisor: Dr. Charles F. Hooper, Jr.
B.S., Physics, University of Florida, 1972
Study of Nervous System Structure and Function with Magnetic Resonance
Our research focuses on the study of fundamental questions about tissue structure and biochemical processes in the nervous system of living organisms, which are accessible to study with nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) techniques. To provide a detailed understanding of the living system, we are examining excised tissue with NMR microscopy then these measurements are extended to studies in vivo. In addition, we develop unique NMR measurement and processing methods, and custom hardware/software systems for our studies of tissue, as well cellular and molecular processes. Our current projects are the following: 1) We are developing and using diffusion weighted imaging to map fiber tracts in highly structured white matter and gray matter of nervous tissue. 2) We are studying convection drug delivery using dynamic contrast enhanced MR imaging in vivo. As part of this study, we are modeling the kinetics of enhancement in a longitudinal study of drug distribution and how this is affected by tissue barriers. 3) We design unique RF coils to enhancement sensitivity. We develop implanted coils that are inductively coupled to an external coil during measurements and provide significant improvements in signal-to-noise ratio. Because of the gains possible, these coils allow the acquisition of very high spatial-resolution MR images and spectra. Future work will be directed toward the NMR measurement in vivo of a neurochemical profile of the brain.