Associate Professor Kai-Hsiang Chuang: Functional and molecular neuroimaging

The laboratory is developing functional and molecular imaging to understand the functional connectivity that underlies behaviour and how diseases lead to impairment of the brain network. Identifying disease-specific patterns of brain activity and connectivity as biomarkers could improve the characterisation of diseases and their progress; the Chuang group aims to facilitate early and specific diagnosis, optimise treatment and develop drug therapeutics. 

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Researcher biography

Dr Kai-Hsiang Chuang received his Ph.D. degree in electrical and biomedical engineering from the National Taiwan University, Taiwan, in 2001. During his graduate study, he developed methods for improving the detection of brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). He undertook postdoctoral research at the National Institutes of Health, USA, from 2003 to 2007, where he focused on understanding brain connectivity using novel functional and molecular imaging. He developed manganese-enhanced MRI for high-resolution imaging functional neural pathways in the rodent brain and cerebral blood flow imaging for mapping the resting-state network of the human brain. He joined the Agency for Science Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore, in 2008 as the head of MRI Group in the Singapore Bioimaging Consortium (a national research institute). He established the first preclinical imaging facility in Singapore and facilitated research collaboration across academia, clinic and industry. His lab pioneered functional connectivity imaging of the rodent brain to understand the neural basis and function of resting-state brain network, and the development and application of MRI biomarkers for treatment development. In late 2015, he moved to the University of Queensland, Australia, as an Associate Professor with the Queensland Brain Institute and the Centre for Advanced Imaging. His current research focuses on understanding the structure and function of brain network that underlies cognition and behavior, such as learning, memory and dementia. He is developing multimodal techniques, including fMRI, calcium recording, electrophysiology and optogenetic/chemogenetic neuromodulation, to test hypothesis in transgenic mouse models and then translating to humans to improve the diagnosis and intervention of disorders. The imaging and analysis techniques he developed have been widely used in the research community and some in clinical trials. He is serving on the editorial boards of Frontiers in Neuroscience: Brain Imaging Methods, NeuroImage and Scientific Reports.