Richard Thompson

Professor, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry - Biomedical Engineering Dept


Professor, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry - Biomedical Engineering Dept
(780) 492-8665
1087 Research Transition Facility
8410 - 114 St NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2V2



Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance Imaging

My research program at the University of Alberta focuses on the development and translation of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for the clinical evaluation of cardiovascular disease and the understanding of mechanisms in health and disease. The appeal of MRI for the diagnosis of cardiovascular disease lies in:

  • its excellent intrinsic soft tissue contrast and countless contrast mechanisms which allows for unp
  • aralleled tissue characterizationthe ability to acquire images non-invasively in three dimensions with arbitrary imag
  • e orientations.the ability to collect these images with resolution of motion across the cardiac cycle, or to freeze cardiac motion.

For example, the sample cardiac MR images below illustrate excellent contrast between the blood and tissue in the heart to provide clear visualization of anatomy and mechanical function across the complete cardiac cycle.

Diseases of interest

  • Myocardial Infarction
  • Heart Failure
  • Heart Transplantation
  • Chemotherapy Toxicity
  • Fabry Disease
  • Cirrhosis
  • Tetralogy of Fallot
  • Pulmonary Hypertension

Development of MRI Methods

  • Fast imaging of relaxation parameters (T1, T2, T2*) of the myocardium and blood for tissue characterization
  • Fat quantification
  • Quantification of myocardial mechanics (strain, velocity, ...)
  • Quantification of skeletal muscle function (oxygen extraction/consumption, perfusion)
  • Blood velocity imaging using phase-contrast (PC)-MRI (volumes, pressure gradients, visualization of complex flow patterns)


BME 564 - Fundamentals of Magnetic Resonance Imaging, MRI

Designed for graduate and advanced undergraduate students requiring a thorough grounding in the fundamentals of imaging by means of nuclear magnetic resonance, NMR. Topics include the principles of NMR as applied to imaging, image processing, imaging techniques for achieving specific types of contrast, image artefacts, and typical applications. Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.

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