Message from Garry E. Gold, M.D.

Annual Meeting Program Committee Chair


If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants.” This is a quote from Sir Isaac Newton in a letter to Sir Robert Hooke. Newton is famous for many things relevant to MRI, including the application of calculus to problems of physics. Hooke is the first person to use a microscope to observe the living cell.

To me, this quote epitomizes the spirit of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. The collaboration between Newton and Hooke was at the intersection of physics and the life sciences—similar to the work of the ISMRM. All of us—scientists, engineers, clinicians, students—are standing on the shoulders of giants as we advance the field of magnetic resonance to benefit patients and humanity. Our next meeting will be a celebration of 20 years of innovation in MRI, innovation that has transformed imaging and medicine.

The 21st annual meeting of the ISMRM will be held in Salt Lake City from April 20-26, 2013. The theme this year is “Discovery, Innovation, and Application – Advancing MR for Improved Health”. In our Salt Lake City plenary lectures, you will learn about the rich history of innovation in MR. An august panel of Gold-medal winners of the ISMRM will describe their “Ah-Ha” moments, the moments of innovation that led to their biggest discoveries. You will also learn how, as we improve MRI, we are making major advances in women’s health and clinical trials. You will learn about the power of this modality for assessing the microstructure and connections within the brain, and how the landscape of MRI may be transformed when it is combined with Positron Emission Tomography (PET), otherwise known as “Mr. PET”.

We have three wonderful speakers giving our named lectures this year. Klaas Prüssmann, PhD, ETH, Zurich, will deliver the Monday morning Lauterbur lecture entitled “Beyond Fourier encoding: The need, the challenges, and the rewards of breaking out of k-space.” Richard Ehman, MD, Professor of Radiology at the Mayo Clinic and former President of the ISMRM, will deliver the Mansfield lecture, “MRI and Mechanobiology: Emerging Science at the Intersection of Engineering and Biology”, on Thursday morning. This year, an exciting new named lecture, the NIBIB New Horizons Lecture, will be given by Dr. Scott Reeder of the University of Wisconsin Madison, entitled “Frontiers in Body MRI: from Qualitative to Quantitative”.

We will continue the highly innovative and exciting meeting format pioneered by Jim Pipe at the Melbourne conference. Our goal is to continue to increase the visibility and impact of traditional and electronic posters, and promote the personal interactions that help make our annual meeting so special. The study group meetings will again take place in a “study group lounge” area, where all attendees can come and enjoy a less structured setting. As this will replace the evening study group meetings, we will make the poster hall a fun place to be in the evenings.

We will also continue to have the “distributed poster sessions” that were such a success in Melbourne. We will distribute the traditional and electronic poster sessions throughout the day, clustering them by theme. Thus each of the three daily two-hour “slots” will contain an e-poster session on a given theme (e.g., cancer), a traditional poster session on a given theme (e.g., fMRI), 5-6 scientific sessions, 2-3 educational courses, and one or more specific study group meetings. This flexible format worked well in Melbourne, reduced content overlap, and made it easier to identify when posters were being presented.

The Education program in Salt Lake City, under the direction of Derek Jones, PhD, is spread throughout the week, along with an intensive program held on the opening weekend. Courses span the breadth of our field, and are targeted toward all levels of expertise. Courses will be clinical, technical, and mixed in nature—a reflection of our diverse society. Many of the popular courses will return, and new courses will be introduced (“Imaging across the Lifespan”, “Practical Quantitative Imaging”, “Revenge: an MRI game show”, and a mock grant review, to name a few).

The setting in Salt Lake City is spectacular, a clean and walkable city surrounded by snow-capped mountains. The convention center is large with a great format for our meeting. A host of excellent shops, bars, and restaurants are situated within walking distance of the convention center, providing an ideal setting for breaks during and after the day’s meeting. The nearby University of Utah is host to a spectacular natural history museum. Skiing will likely be in season at the world-class resorts of Snowbird and Alta, just minutes outside of Salt Lake City. The resort town of Park City is situated about 25 minutes from the convention center, and some of the most spectacular natural scenery on earth is found in the national parks of southern Utah (Zion, Arches, Canyonlands, Bryce Canyon, and Capitol Reef National Parks). You will find people happy to help you plan small or large adventures through our website and in the exhibition hall at the meeting.

Throughout the meeting, you will encounter the wonderful staff members of our central office. Although we mostly only see them the week of the meeting, they work tirelessly throughout the year to make this meeting the incredible experience that it is. In my role as AMPC chair, I have come to greatly appreciate their dedication and professionalism. I believe we owe them a debt of gratitude for the role they play in advancing this meeting, our field, and our respective careers, and I encourage you to pass on a word of thanks as you interact with them.

On behalf of the Annual Meeting Program Committee, I invite you to come to Salt Lake City in April 2013 to the 21st Annual Meeting of the ISMRM. Be part of the celebration of twenty years of innovation and advances in MRI. The setting and the venue are spectacular, the people are friendly, and the Rocky Mountains await you after the meeting.


Garry Gold
Chair, Annual Meeting Program Committee