August 26, 2005

Radiology’s Price named first Hounsfield Chair

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Ronald Price, Ph.D.

Radiology’s Price named first Hounsfield Chair

Ronald Price, Ph.D., has been named the first recipient of the newly established Hounsfield Chair in Radiology.

Price, professor of Radiology and Radiological Sciences and director of the Section of Radiological Sciences, said the award will help support his efforts to devise new imaging techniques that one day may more precisely monitor and measure disease progression and therapy.

“First off, I'm very honored to be named to this chair,” Price said. “My hope is that it will allow me to continue working on developing new techniques for cancer imaging, especially ones that allow for a more quantitative approach. And that's crucial because in the past it was hard to monitor disease — its occurrence, its progression, its treatment — without being able to quantify your observations.”

Price and his colleagues are currently developing and testing new imaging compounds, or “probes,” that, when combined with three-dimensional imaging technology, are cancer-specific. In the mouse model stage right now, the ultimate aim is to create imaging tools that will 'see' cancer on the molecular level.

“It's applying quantitative imaging to cancer, primarily in monitoring and observing the course of therapy,” Price said. “Hopefully, one day we'll be able to expand the techniques to guidance of therapy.”

Price joined the Vanderbilt faculty in 1971. He received his B.S., with honors, from Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green and his Ph.D. in Physics from Vanderbilt.

Martin Sandler, M.D., Carol D. and Henry P. Pendergrass Professor of Radiology and Radiological Sciences and chair of the Department, said the newly established chair reflects Price's many contributions to the department and to the field of diagnostic imaging.

“I can think of no one more deserving of this honor. Dr. Price has been a prominent figure in the development of MRI research at Vanderbilt and was also key in the recruitment of Dr. John Gore to Vanderbilt,” Sandler said.

The Hounsfield Chair in Radiology is named for Godfrey Hounsfield, the late British engineer who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1979 for his work in developing computed tomography (CT) imaging techniques.