Keynote List

Keynote 1: Prof. Alison Noble, Oxford University
Ultrasound Image Analysis: challenges and opportunities
Keynote 2: Prof. Guang-Zhong Yang, Imperial College London
Imaging, Sensing and Robotics for Minimally Invasive Surgery
Keynote 3: Prof. Daniel Alexander, University College London
Microstructure Imaging: next generation diffusion MRI
Keynote 4: Prof. Nassir Navab, Technische Universitat Munchen, Germany
Patient and Process Specific Imaging and Visualization for computer assisted interventions
Keynote 5: Prof. Perumal Nithiarasu, Swansea University
Patient-sepcifc modelling of endothelial dysfunction map (EDF-map)

Prof. Alison Noble

Oxford University, UK

Ultrasound Image Analysis: challenges and opportunities

Speaker’s bio: Professor Alison Noble (FREng) is a Statutory Professor of Biomedical Engineering in the Oxford University Department of Engineering Science and a Fellow of St Hilda's College, Oxford. She is a Senior Member of the IEEE, a Fellow of the IET, and a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. She is a Director of the Biomedical Image Analysis (BioMedIA) Laboratory, a multi-disciplinary research group working in the area of biomedical imaging and image analysis, a subarea of biomedical engineering. The laboratory is based in the Oxford Institute for Biomedical Engineering (IBME), part of the Department of Engineering Science, which opened in January 2008 and is the hub for biomedical engineering at Oxford.

Professor Noble heads large research activities in cardiovascular image analysis, women's health imaging (obstetrics and perinatal), oncology and smaller activities in image-guided interventions and therapy and cellular image analysis. A particular research strength is ultrasound image analysis (segmentation, registration and RF-signal analysis), with current activities including machine learning for ultrasound segmentation and ultrasound-based biomechanical property estimation. Recent research highlights include the group's publications on fusion echocardiography, multi-modality cardiac image analysis, elasticity and slip imaging for breast cancer diagnosis, and fetal ultrasound image analysis. Much of her group's research is motivated by the need to make more intelligent use of ultrasound information for clinical decision-making and the desire to extract quantitative functional information from spatio-temporal acquisitions (movies of moving objects).To find out more about her research activities see the laboratory Research webpages.

Professor Noble has published around 250 publications. A list of her recent publications can be found at the BioMedIA website Publications webpages. She has supervised 30 PhD students to successful completion, with 17 further DPhil students currently under her sole or co-supervision.

Professor Noble has played a major role in setting up the Biomedical Engineering taught courses and doctoral training programmes at Oxford since 2002. She led setting up and was the first Course Director of the 1yr Oxford MSc in Biomedical Engineering (Director 2006-7,2008-9), also playing a key role in introducing biomedical engineering into the MEng in Engineering Science during 2002-6. From 2002-8 she was on the management committee of the EPSRC Life Sciences Interface Doctoral Training Centre postgraduate DPhil programme, and the engineering department co-ordinator for that programme. In 2008 she led the successful bid, and is now Director of the £7.1m RCUK Centre for Doctoral Training in Healthcare Innovation, which is pioneering the way to train postgraduate PhD students in healthcare innovation and translational in biomedical engineering. She received a University Teaching Award for her contributions to biomedical engineering teaching and training at the University of Oxford in 2010.

Prof. Guang-Zhong Yang

Imperial College, UK

Imaging, Sensing and Robotics for Minimally Invasive Surgery

Abstract: Reduced patient trauma and recovery time combined with improved precision and dexterity for micro-scale tasks are major benefits of robotically assisted Minimal Invasive Surgery (MIS). This lecture outlines key clinical challenges and research opportunities in developing biomimetic robotic systems integrated with in situ, in vivo imaging and sensing towards the future evolution of medical robotics. The talk will cover the latest developments in fully articulated, bio-inspired robot platforms that facilitate intra-luminal or extra-luminal anatomical curved pathway navigation with integrated sensing and navigation. It addresses key theoretical considerations of bio-mimetic control for intra- operative manipulation under dynamic local/global constraints, as well as the current paradigm shift and clinical demand for bringing cellular and molecular imaging modalities to an in vivo, in situ setting to allow for real-time tissue characterization, functional assessment, and intraoperative guidance. Issues concerning effective, natural human-robot interface are discussed and example implementations for these highly redundant robot platforms based on the concept of perceptual docking are provided.

Speaker’s bio: Professor Guang-Zhong Yang (FREng, FIEEE, FIET, FAIMBE) is director and co-founder of the Hamlyn Centre for Robotic Surgery, Deputy Chairman of the Institute of Global Health Innovation, Imperial College London, UK. Professor Yang also holds a number of key academic positions at Imperial – he is Director and Founder of the Royal Society/Wolfson Medical Image Computing Laboratory, co-founder of the Wolfson Surgical Technology Laboratory, Chairman of the Centre for Pervasive Sensing. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, fellow of IEEE, IET, AIMBE and a recipient of the Royal Society Research Merit Award and listed in The Times Eureka ‘Top 100’ in British Science.

Professor Yang’s main research interests are in medical imaging, sensing and robotics. In imaging, he is credited for a number of novel MR phase contrast velocity imaging and computational modelling techniques that have transformed in vivo blood flow quantification and visualization. These include the development of locally focused imaging combined with real-time navigator echoes for resolving respiratory motion for high-resolution coronary-angiography, as well as MR dynamic flow pressure mapping for which he received the ISMRM I. I Rabi Award. He pioneered the concept of perceptual docking for robotic control, which represents a paradigm shift of learning and knowledge acquisition of motor and perceptual/cognitive behaviour for robotics, as well as the field of Body Sensor Network (BSN) for providing personalized wireless monitoring platforms that are pervasive, intelligent, and context-aware. He has published over 300 peer- reviewed publications, edited over 10 books/conference proceedings, numerous research/best paper awards, and a large research grant portfolio from the UK/EU funding bodies, research charities, and industrial sources.

The Hamlyn Centre ( directed by Prof Yang has been established for developing safe, effective and accessible imaging, sensing and robotics technologies that can reshape the future of healthcare for both developing and developed countries. Focusing on technological innovation but with a strong emphasis on clinical translation and direct patient benefit with a global impact, the centre is at the forefront of research in imaging, sensing and robotics for addressing global health challenges associated with demographic, environment, social and economic changes. The Centre plays an active role in international collaboration and outreach activities, as well as in the training of surgeons and engineers in robotic technologies, thereby facilitating a fully integrated clinical approach. It has extensive research, engineering laboratory spaces at the South Kensington campus of Imperial, large pre-clinical facilities at Northwick Park with state-of-the art imaging and surgical equipment for in vivo validation, and comprehensive clinical laboratories at the Surgical Innovation Centre at Imperial College St Mary’s Hospital.

In addition to its core research activities, the Centre offers comprehensive PhD and MRes programmes for researchers with a strong technical or clinical background. These programmes are designed to develop cutting edge, disruptive technologies and blue-sky ideas; yet will be appropriate and accessible to both developing and developed countries for addressing different needs of the healthcare challenges with a common ground for technological innovations. Through its endowment fund and close working relationship with industry, government and non-government organisations, the Centre also offers Advanced Fellowships, International Fellowships, Faculty Exchange Programmes, and Research Secondment for specific research projects and technical areas.

Prof. Daniel Alexander

University College London, UK

Microstructure imaging: next generation diffusion MRI

Abstract: My talk will focus on the largest current activity of my group: microstructure imaging using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Microstructure imaging aims to map histological features of biological tissue (e.g. cell size, shape, density, and arrangement) using non-invasive imaging. Classical histology provides the gold-standard diagnosis for a wide range of diseases, because it is the only way to access such specific information about the cellular architecture of tissue. However, the procedure is invasive and limited to small target areas. Microstructure imaging potentially estimates the same information non- invasively and produces maps over whole organs. It works by fitting a mathematical model of the cellular architecture in each image voxel. Diffusion MRI is a key component of the technique, because the intensity in each image voxel is sensitive to the geometry of cells and membranes within. I will outline the basic ideas and key challenges in realising this technology and describe the current state of the art and on-going work on the topic; see for example (Alexander et al NeuroImage 2010; Drobnjak et al J. Mag. Res. 2010, 2011; Zhang et al NeuroImage 2011, 2012; Panagiotaki et al NeuroImage 2012; Siow et al J. Mag. Res. 2012). Model-based imaging and image analysis is a more general theme of my work, which I shall illustrate with some of the other activities of my group. In particular, I have an emerging strand of work on disease progression modelling, see for example (Fonteijn et al NeuroImage 2012), which my talk will introduce briefly.

Speaker’s bio: Prof. Daniel Alexander is Professor of Imaging Science in the Department of Computer Science and Centre for Medical Image Computing at UCL. He is an EPSRC Leadership Fellow and co-founder of the EU CONNECT consortium. He leads the Microstructure Imaging Group, which includes 15 researchers many of whom work on joint projects with the Department of Medical Physics, the UCL Institute of Neurology, and the UCL Centre for Advanced Biomedical Imaging. He also leads development and maintenance of the open-source software toolkit, Camino.

Professor Alexander's background is in mathematics and computer science with core expertise in computational modelling and biomedical imaging. His PhD work at UCL was in computer vision, modelling colour image data for autonomous vehicle guidance. His post-doctoral at the University of Pennsylvania moved him into medical imaging, and he is perhaps best known for his work in brain MRI, most specifically in diffusion MRI. His work on that topic includes seminal contributions to registration of diffusion tensor images, modelling crossing fibres, tractography, pulse sequence and image protocol design, tissue modelling, and microstructure imaging. He also continues to work on more general medical imaging and image analysis problems. Most recently his new strand of work on computational modelling of disease progression focusses on neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease and other dementias, using imaging and non-imaging biomarkers. A theme of his research is a model-based approach to all these problems across a range of scales: from microscopic models of white matter fibre configurations and composition, through whole-brain models of connectivity, up to whole-cohort models of brain atrophy over time. His work has a strong emphasis on translation to basic neuroscience, neuroanatomy, and clinical applications, including multiple sclerosis, dementia, stroke and cancer. The Camino toolkit provides a central mechanism for translation.

Professor Alexander has around 200 peer-reviewed publications. He is associate editor of IEEE Trans. on Medical Imaging (TMI) and PLoS ONE, editorial board member for NeuroImage, and was program chair of BMVC 2009, as well as numerous more specialised workshops and educational sessions on Diffusion MRI. He has graduated 8 doctoral students since starting his academic career at UCL in 2000. He has taught courses on basic programming, data structures, computer vision, image processing, and research methods at advanced MSc level, and starts a new advanced MSc course this year on computational modelling for biomedical imaging. He was program director for the MSc Computer Graphics, Vision and Imaging at UCL until 2008 when his fellowship started.

Prof. Nassir Navab

Technische Universitat Munchen, Germany

Patient and Process Specific Imaging and Visualization for computer assisted interventions

Abstract: In this talk, I will focus on the need for development of novel imaging techniques for patient and process specific intra-operative imaging and present some of our latest results as exemplary cases. As such novel intra-operative and multi-modality imaging techniques provide the surgical crew with rich co-registered information, their appropriate visualization and their integration into surgical workflow, their validation and finally their full deployment are becoming active subjects of research in our community. I will in particular trace the Freehand SPECT and Camera Augmented Mobile C-arm (CAMC) from the early development of research ideas within our multi-disciplinary research laboratories to their deployment in different surgical suites. The multi-disciplinary nature of this research guides us through different aspects of medical physics, computer assisted surgery and advanced imaging and visualization. I will then show how the ‘real world laboratories’ at our university hospitals demonstrate their efficiency through the smooth path they paved for bringing the first medical augmented reality user interfaces into the operating rooms. I will finally try to discuss some of the interesting and exciting challenges that the CAI community needs to face in the upcoming years.

Speaker’s bio: Nassir Navab is a full professor and director of the institute for Computer Aided Medical Procedures (CAMP: at Technical University of Munich (TUM) with a secondary faculty appointment at its Medical School. He is also acting as Chief Scientific Officer for SurgicEye GmbH ( In November 2006, he was elected as a member of board of directors of MICCAI society severing until February 2011. He has served on the Steering Committee of the IEEE Symposium on Mixed and Augmented Reality between 2001 and 2008. He is the author of hundreds of peer reviewed scientific papers and over 60 US and international patents. He is the associated editor of several scientific journals including IEEE TMI and Medical Image Analysis. He is the general chair for IPCAI 2012, program chair for MICCAI 2010, MICCAI 2011 and general chair for MICCAI 2015. He has received Siemens Inventor of the Year award in 2001. He also received the SMIT technology award in 2010 for his inventive contributions to Camera Augmented Mobile C-arm and Freehand SPECT technologies; he is proud of his students who have received many prestigious awards in conferences including IEEE FG 2011, MICCAI 2007, 2009 and 2010, VOEC-ICCV 2009, AMDO 2009, BMVC 2009, IPMI 2007 and IEEE ISMAR 2005.

Prof. Perumal Nithiarasu

Swansea University, UK

Patient-sepcifc modelling of endothelial dysfunction map (EDF-map)

Speaker’s bio: Prof. Perumal Nithiarasu received the Ph.D. degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India, in 1997, and the a D.Sc. degree from Swansea Univer- sity, Swansea, U.K., in 2007.

Prof. Nithiarasu is currently a Full Professor in the College of Engineering, Swansea University. He was a Reader between 2006 and 2008 and Senior Lecturer between 2004 and 2006, a Lecturer between 2000 and 2004, and a Research Officer between 1996 and 2000 at Swansea University. He currently holds an Advanced Fellowship from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, UK. His research interests include computational methods and computational bioengineering. He is an editor of the International Journal for Numerical Methods in Biomedical Engineering. Prof. Nithiarasu is a Fellow of the IMA (U.K.) and IMechE (U.K.) and a Senior Member of the AIAA.

Page last modified on July 16, 2012, at 11:29 AM