Phillip Ward

Quantification of vascular damage and mircobleeds using susceptibility weighted imaging with application to normal ageing and Alzheimer's disease

Phillip Ward headshot
2012 AADRF PhD Scholarship
Detailed Project Summary

I have examined how MRI method affects the way we look at blood vessels in the brain. This included different types of MRI, different ways to process the images and different ways to examine the images. By looking at all the different options, we built a picture of how these choices affect the final product. I am now using this data to define the choices will give the best results for blood vessel examination. The next stage of the project involves validating the vessel visibility on MRI and analysing the sensitivity and limits of MRI to micro-vessel diameter. The threshold of what size vessels can be identified on standard MRI (SWI sequence) is an important question going forward so a degree of certainty and uncertainty can be applied to vessel-like structures seen on MRI. Following this, prototype experiments using the ASPREE dataset will begin, applying and examining vessel segmentation methods. This will involve a small dataset (n<20) and will assist in deciding upon segmentation routines to use going forward. Further prototype experiments will take place on the segmented vasculature from the previous prototype experiments. These experiments will involve applying and examining vascular characteristic identification and network metrics on the segmented vessels. The purpose of these experiments will be on deciding upon metrics to use going forward.

Publications and Presentations resulting from award

Conference presentations

Conference poster at the 5th Asia-Pacific NMR Conference in Brisbane 2013 entitled “Optimization of phase processing for magnetic resonance venography”. Awarded the ANZMAG Outstanding Student Poster Award.

Where are they now?

Mr Ward is a PhD candidate based at the Monash Biomedical Imaging, Monash University. He aims to complete his PhD thesis in 2015.