Renowned imaging engineer to join Department of Biomedical Engineering

Quing Zhu who studies advanced imaging techniques for clinical diagnosis of breast and ovarian cancers, will join the faculty of the School of Engineering & Applied Science at Washington University in St. Louis July 1.

Quing Zhu

Zhu will join the Department of Biomedical Engineering from the University of Connecticut, where she studies near-infrared tomography using diffused waves, photoacoustic and ultrasound imaging techniques, optical coherence tomography and the clinical applications of these imaging techniques on breast and ovarian cancer detection and diagnosis.

"We are thrilled to have recruited a faculty with the level of accomplishments and integrity as Professor Zhu," said Steven C. George, MD, PhD, the Elvera & William Stuckenberg Professor of Technology & Human Affairs and chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering. "Her research will add significant strength to our imaging technologies research at Washington University, and she will play a leadership role as we continue to build this area."

Zhu combines ultrasound and near infrared (NIR) imaging modalities for clinical diagnosis of cancers. This combined approach overcomes the localization uncertainty of optical reconstruction and improves the ultrasound diagnosis. She and her team have explored the theory and modeling behind this novel technique and have conducted clinical studies at the UConn Health Center and Hartford Hospital. Initial results have shown great success in early diagnosis of malignant and benign breast lesions and in predicting and monitoring breast cancer treatment response using this technique. Her pioneering research has now been heralded by the imaging and radiology community as an important advance in society's ability to distinguish benign and malignant lesions in the breast.

In addition, Zhu and her team have pioneered co-registered ultrasound and photoacoustic imaging techniques for ovarian cancer detection and diagnosis and have obtained initial premising results. She anticipates collaborating with faculty at the School of Engineering and the School of Medicine to further advance the technologies and explore new technologies for cancer detection and diagnosis.

Her research is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. Department of Defense, the Donaghue Medical Research Foundation and the Connecticut Department of Public Health and Connecticut Innovation.

Zhu has been named a Fellow of Optical Society of American (OSA), a Fellow of SPIE- International Society for Optics and Photonics and a member of Connecticut Academy of Science. She also received the Connecticut Technology Council 2007 Women of Innovation Award.

Zhu earned a bachelor's degree in applied mathematics from Northern Jiaotong University, a master's degree in biomedical engineering from the Chinese Academy of Medical Science and a doctorate in bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania.

The School of Engineering & Applied Science at Washington University in St. Louis focuses intellectual efforts through a new convergence paradigm and builds on strengths, particularly as applied to medicine and health, energy and environment, entrepreneurship and security. With 88 tenured/tenure-track and 40 additional full-time faculty, 1,300 undergraduate students, more than 900 graduate students and more than 23,000 alumni, we are working to leverage our partnerships with academic and industry partners — across disciplines and across the world — to contribute to solving the greatest global challenges of the 21st century.