Sharmila Majumdar, PhD, has been awarded the 2016 Gold Medal of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM) for her innovative contributions to the development of quantitative imaging methods.
Her research has potential for personalizing treatments for patients, and it is a significant step forward in setting up the precision medicine framework for musculoskeletal diseases.
“Dr. Majumdar has been a leader in MRI for 30 years and has in particular pioneered the development and applications of quantitative imaging to diagnose and understand musculoskeletal disorders,” said John C. Gore, PhD, professor of Radiology and Radiologic Sciences and Director of the Institute for Imaging Sciences at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. “Her work has had broad translational impact on the clinical management of common problems of joints and cartilage.”
Majumdar is the director of the Musculoskeletal and Quantitative Imaging Research (MQIR) group at UC San Francisco, an interdisciplinary team consisting of faculty, post-doctoral scholars and students. Collaborators include orthopedic surgeons, rheumatologists, epidemiologists and computational scientists.
The group has focused on pushing the realm of musculoskeletal imaging to include high-resolution, morphological and molecular imaging using magnetic resonance imaging, computed tomography, and combined positron emission tomography-MR imaging.
“Quantitative MR has created tremendous advances in the areas of osteoporosis, osteo-arthritis, and injury-related joint degeneration. These conditions affect millions of people, have significant impact on the quality of life, and are a major economic burden,” Majumdar said. “This award is for our entire team, and I am very grateful to the collaborative and inclusive faculty, as well as the postdocs and trainees working in the MQIR group, for their support of our mission.”
Sharmila Majumdar obtained her PhD from Yale University in 1987 in Engineering and Applied Science. She was a postdoctoral researcher and assistant professor at Yale, before joining UCSF as an assistant professor in 1989. She is currently a professor and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging. She has joint appointments in the Departments of Orthopedic Surgery and in Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences at UCSF, and in Bioengineering at UC Berkeley.
Majumdar’s research is supported by grants from the NIH and corporate entities. It is diverse, ranging from technical development to clinical trials. She was selected as a fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineers in 2004, and a fellow of the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine in 2008. The UCSF Haile T. Debas Academy of Medical Educators awarded her the “Excellence in Direct Teaching and Excellence in Mentoring and Advising Award” in 2007. She has published extensively in highly regarded journals including The Journal of Bone Mineral Research and Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. She serves as a reviewer on the editorial board of scientific journals and is a recognized expert in the area of imaging.
The ISMRM is a multidisciplinary nonprofit association that promotes the innovation, development and application of magnetic resonance techniques in medicine and biology throughout the world.
Majumdar received the ISMRM Gold Medal on May 9 at the society's annual meeting in Singapore.