Joseph A. Helpern

InstitutionMedical University of South Carolina
AddressP.O. Box MSC 510
BE 210
Bioengineering Bldg - 68 President St.
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    Collapse Biography 
    Collapse awards and honors
    1977Citation for Outstanding Accomplishments, American Chemical Society
    1978 - 1979Research Assistantship, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
    1992 - 1993Shannon Award, National Institutes of Health
    2000Excellence in Research Award, New York State, Office of Mental Health
    2005Fellow (elected), International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine
    2008Wyeth Research Lecturer, Temple University
    2012Distinguished Investigator, Academy of Radiology Research
    2013Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award, Oakland University

    Collapse Overview 
    Collapse overview
    Helpern’s area of specialty is brain imaging from a perspective of a physicist. “I do medical research as a physicist by developing new imaging technologies.”

    Helpern, Ph.D., is no newcomer to imaging. The director of MUSC’s Center for Biomedical Imaging is credited with building the first 3-Tesla MRI, a high-field version today considered state-of-the-art clinically. Recently, he and long-time collaborator Dr. Jens H. Jensen, also a physicist, developed diffusional kurtosis imaging (DKI), a new and important tool in the radiologist’s toolbox.

    “The research we’ve been doing and the development of technology that we’re translating into the clinic is really exciting because it’s showing that we have exquisite sensitivity into imaging biomarkers early on into diseases such as Alzheimer’s Disease, epilepsy, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, stroke and many others.”

    Helpern, who is director of MUSC’s Center for Biomedical Imaging, said the center has a strong team of scientists skilled in the art of imaging who work well together. He’s excited where the group is in advancing medicine across many fields. “I’m a strong believer in hallway conversations as a way of progressing science. It’s a physical center for scientists to get together to have impromptu talks on the chalkboard and get their ideas together. “

    Imaging technology is critical in medicine now and used for the advancement in every specialty. “A dollar spent in advancing imaging technology is spread quite nicely in investing across the entire enterprise of medicine. Ask yourself, how much is it worth to look inside someone’s body without opening it? There was a time, a day, when we used to cut inside people’s bodies just to see what the problem was and we don’t do that much anymore.”

    Before coming to MUSC in 2010, Helpern was the founding director of the Center for Biomedical Imaging at New York University School of Medicine. Helpern holds several patents in the field of MRI and has authored over 125 papers. He also hold’s a master’s degree in chemistry from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and a doctorate in medical physics from Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. Helpern is the recipient of the Excellence in Research Award from the New York State Office of Mental Health, is an elected Fellow of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, and last year received the Distinguished Investigator Award by the Academy of Radiology Research.
    Collapse keywords
    ADD/ADHD, Women-s Health, Brain, Healthy Volunteer Studies, Substance Use, Adolescents

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    Collapse selected publications
    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.
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    PMC Citations indicate the number of times the publication was cited by articles in PubMed Central, and the Altmetric score represents citations in news articles and social media. (Note that publications are often cited in additional ways that are not shown here.) Fields are based on how the National Library of Medicine (NLM) classifies the publication's journal and might not represent the specific topic of the publication. Translation tags are based on the publication type and the MeSH terms NLM assigns to the publication. Some publications (especially newer ones and publications not in PubMed) might not yet be assigned Field or Translation tags.) Click a Field or Translation tag to filter the publications.
    1. Shaw CB, Jensen JH, Deardorff RL, Spampinato MV, Helpern JA. Comparison of Diffusion Metrics Obtained at 1.5T and 3T in Human Brain With Diffusional Kurtosis Imaging. J Magn Reson Imaging. 2017 03; 45(3):673-680. PMID: 27402163.
    2. Glenn GR, Jensen JH, Helpern JA, Spampinato MV, Kuzniecky R, Keller SS, Bonilha L. Epilepsy-related cytoarchitectonic abnormalities along white matter pathways. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2016 Sep; 87(9):930-6. PMID: 27076491.
    3. Taylor ZJ, Hui ES, Watson AN, Nie X, Deardorff RL, Jensen JH, Helpern JA, Shih AY. Microvascular basis for growth of small infarcts following occlusion of single penetrating arterioles in mouse cortex. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab. 2016 08; 36(8):1357-73. PMID: 26661182.
    4. Jensen JH, Helpern JA. Resolving power for the diffusion orientation distribution function. Magn Reson Med. 2016 08; 76(2):679-88. PMID: 26444579.
    5. Jensen JH, Russell Glenn G, Helpern JA. Fiber ball imaging. Neuroimage. 2016 Jan 01; 124(Pt A):824-833. PMID: 26432187.
    6. Glenn GR, Helpern JA, Tabesh A, Jensen JH. Optimization of white matter fiber tractography with diffusional kurtosis imaging. NMR Biomed. 2015 Oct; 28(10):1245-56. PMID: 26275886.
    7. Glenn GR, Helpern JA, Tabesh A, Jensen JH. Quantitative assessment of diffusional kurtosis anisotropy. NMR Biomed. 2015 Apr; 28(4):448-59. PMID: 25728763.
    8. Wintermark M, Coombs L, Druzgal TJ, Field AS, Filippi CG, Hicks R, Horton R, Lui YW, Law M, Mukherjee P, Norbash A, Riedy G, Sanelli PC, Stone JR, Sze G, Tilkin M, Whitlow CT, Wilde EA, York G, Provenzale JM. Traumatic brain injury imaging research roadmap. AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 2015 Mar; 36(3):E12-23. PMID: 25655872.
    9. Adisetiyo V, Helpern JA. Brain iron: a promising noninvasive biomarker of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder that warrants further investigation. Biomark Med. 2015; 9(5):403-6. PMID: 25985171.
    10. Amrhein TJ, Tabesh A, Collins HR, Gordon LL, Helpern JA, Jensen JH. Instituting a radiology residency scholarly activity program. Educ Health (Abingdon). 2015 Jan-Apr; 28(1):68-73. PMID: 26261118.
    11. Nie X, Hamlett ED, Granholm AC, Hui ES, Helpern JA, Jensen JH, Boger HA, Collins HR, Falangola MF. Evidence of altered age-related brain cytoarchitecture in mouse models of down syndrome: a diffusional kurtosis imaging study. Magn Reson Imaging. 2015 May; 33(4):437-47. PMID: 25527393.
    12. Lee CY, Tabesh A, Nesland T, Jensen JH, Helpern JA, Spampinato MV, Bonilha L. Human brain asymmetry in microstructural connectivity demonstrated by diffusional kurtosis imaging. Brain Res. 2014 Nov 07; 1588:73-80. PMID: 25239477.
    13. Jensen JH, Helpern JA. In vivo characterization of brain iron with magnetic field correlation imaging. Future Neurol. 2014 May 01; 9(3):247-250. PMID: 25379027.
    14. Jensen JH, Hui ES, Helpern JA. Double-pulsed diffusional kurtosis imaging. NMR Biomed. 2014 Apr; 27(4):363-70. PMID: 24623712.
    15. Jensen JH, Hui ES, Helpern JA. Double-pulsed diffusional kurtosis imaging. NMR Biomed. 2014 Feb 20. PMID: 24677661.
    16. Novikov DS, Fieremans E, Jensen JH, Helpern JA. Random walk with barriers. Nat Phys. 2011 Jun 01; 7(6):508-514. PMID: 21686083.
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