CALL FOR NOMINATIONS - Deadline is October 31
The Laukien Prize was established in 1999 to honor the memory of Professor Gunther Laukien, a co-founder of Bruker. The Laukien Prize carries a monetary award of $20,000 funded by Bruker and is intended to recognize cutting-edge experimental NMR research with a high probability of enabling beneficial new applications. The Prize recipient will also deliver the opening Plenary lecture at the ENC conference.
View listing of Past Recipients of the Gunther Laukien Prize
Nominations for the Laukien Prize are now being accepted. The award will be announced at the next ENC. The nominated work should be published within the last three years. In some special cases, the award may be for cumulative achievements over a longer period.
Nominations should include the following and be submitted by October 31:
- Name of nominee, the nominee's affiliation, address, phone, fax and e-mail.
- Name of nominator, address, phone, fax and e-mail.
- A brief (no more than 200 words) description of the work serving as the basis for the nomination.
- A list of relevant publications (no more than 5).
ENC - Laukien Prize
2019 Galisteo Street, Bldg i-1
Santa Fe, NM 87505 (USA)
2016 Laukien Prize Recipients
Dr. Robert S. Balaban and Professor Peter van Zijl
Chemical Exchange Saturation Transfer (CEST) Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Robert S. Balaban
Laboratory of Cardiac Energetics, National Heart Lung and Blood Institute
Dr. Robert S. Balaban was an undergraduate at the University of Miami where he graduated magna cum laude in 1975 with degrees in chemistry and biology. His graduate work was performed at Duke University where he received his Ph.D. (1979) with at thesis entitled "The coupling of aerobic metabolism to active ion transport in the kidney". During the next two years he was a NATO Postdoctoral Fellowship with George Radda in Oxford, and then (1981-1987) a Staff Fellow, Senior Staff Fellow and a Research Physiologist in the Laboratory of Kidney and Electrolyte Metabolism, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) at NIH. In 1988 he assumed a position as Chief of the Laboratory of Cardiac Energetics, a position he still occupies. From 1999-2005 he was Scientific Director, Laboratory Research Program, NHLBI, and since 2005 he has been Scientific Director of the Division of Intramural Research of NHLBI. Dr. Balaban has also been very active in the magnetic resonance imaging community serving as President of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (1995-1996) and the Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (2000-2002). His awards include the Gold Metal of Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (1994) and the NIH Directors Award (1998, 1999 and 2010).
Balaban and his colleagues performed the initial CEST imaging experiments in the late 1980’s with studies of the kinetics of the creatine kinase reaction by monitoring the effect of saturating the lower concentration P resonance of ATP on the CrP signal amplitude. This resulted in the first image of a chemical exchange process in living tissue. Subsequently, the exchange phenomenon exploited by imaging the relatively strong CrP signal was applied analogously to imaging the strong 1H signal of water. In this case the image was sensitive to the chemical exchange of protons between H2O and metabolites that had chemically exchangeable protons such as urea and ammonia in the kidney. A key experiment demonstrated a change in the water T1 with the control or metabolite specific irradiation. This work resulted in the original publication on what today is known as Magnetization Transfer Contrast (MTC) in the kidney. He later coined the term CEST in a series of papers evaluating classes of molecules that could serve as CEST contrast agents for content as well as pH. These original experiments served to nucleate the field of CEST imaging.
Dr. Balaban’s current research efforts involve attempting to provide structure-function insights on the sub-cellular scale in biological tissues. One long time focus of these studies is the evaluation of mitochondria structure and function in intact tissues using a variety of imaging modalities from high resolution electron microscopy to multiphoton excitation microscopy. Recently his group demonstrated a functional mitochondrial reticulum within muscle cells providing a rapid conductive path for energy distribution in the cell. In addition to his long standing interest in energetics, Dr. Balaban remains interested in the properties of solvent water in a variety of tissues. He has developed Coherent Anti-Stokes Raman Spectroscopy imaging techniques suitable for imaging the O-H and O-D bond in biological tissues permitting the direct monitoring of water motions in tissues on a sub-micron scale. His recent work focuses on the movement of water across the artery wall. Dr. Balaban continues to be involved in NMR applications through his support as Scientific Director at NHLBI of both basic structural NMR programs as well as a major MRI program in clinical diagnosis and treatment on the Bethesda Campus.
Peter van Zijl
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, F.M. Kirby Research Center for Functional Brain Imaging, Kennedy Krieger Research Institute
Dr. Peter van Zijl graduated cum laude with a master's degree in inorganic chemistry and continued to obtain a doctoral degree in mathematics and physics. His thesis focused on the description of molecular alignment in magnetic fields and the changes in the nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectra related to this. After completing fellowships in nuclear magnetic resonance (Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh) and MRI (National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute), he became a research assistant professor at Georgetown University in 1990. In 1992, he was invited to join the Department of Radiology at Johns Hopkins University Medical School, where he was promoted to associate professor (1992) and professor (1997). In 1999, he became the founding director of the F.M. Kirby Research Center for Functional Brain Imaging at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. This center has since been awarded status as a National Center for Biomedical Technology Research funded by the National Center for Research Resources. Dr. van Zijl is a fellow of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and has received the society's gold medal award for scientific achievement. He also served on the executive committee of the Experimental NMR conference and chaired the ENC conference in 2003. He resides on the editorial boards of the journals: NMR in Biomedicine, Journal of Magnetic Resonance, and Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. He is an ad hoc member of several NIH review panels for several institutes.
Peter’s early interest in CEST imaging was a natural progression from work on exchange-based NMR during the nineties when he and his students were developing multi-dimensional 1H NMR spectroscopy methods to study amide protons in proteins. At the time, it was difficult to detect rapidly exchanging amide protons using proton NMR, because the water suppression also caused suppression of the exchangeable protons signals due to transfer of the water saturation during the measurement. So we developed flip-back and other fast suppression approaches, as well as methods to invert water and detect only exchangeable protons, so-called water exchange (WEX) filtering.
These methods were then applied to the study of exchangeable protons in cells and tissues, and showed that the relative intensity of solvent-exchangeable and exchange-relayed peaks to nonexchangeable peaks increased with rapid scanning. The origin of this effect is that during the short recovery period, magnetization of exchangeable peaks is replenished from the large reservoir of nonsaturated water magnetization by physical exchange. In contrast nonexchanging peaks recover as a function of T1. This is basically the inverse of the CEST effect. We returned to this research in 2000 stimulated by a presentation by Bob Balaban at the ISMRM meeting, and in 2003 we published the first detection of amide protons of cellular proteins and peptides in vivo, which nucleated the widespread application of in vivo CEST. We are now applying this in the clinic to detect malignant tumors and to monitor tumor treatment. Since 1996 we have published more than 60 CEST or exchange related papers.
Dr. van Zijl’s present research focuses on developing new methodologies for using MRI and Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (MRS) to study brain function and physiology. In addition, he is working on understanding the basic mechanisms of the MRI signal changes measured during functional MRI (fMRI) tests of the brain. Other interests are in mapping the wiring of the brain (axonal connections between the brains functional regions) and the design of new technologies for MRI to follow where cells are migrating, and when genes are expressed. A more recent interest is the development of bioorganic, biodegradable MRI contrast agents. The ultimate goal is to transform these technologies into fast methods that are compatible with the time available for multi-modal clinical diagnosis using MRI. Dr. van Zijl's research is funded by several grants from the National Center for Research Resources and the National Institute of Biomedical Engineering and Bioengineering.