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Inaugural lecture of Susann Boretius

Göttingen Neuroscientist discusses how magnetic resonance imaging can provide us with a better understanding of how the brain, heart and other organs function.
Susann Boretius is a Professor for Functional Imaging, jointly appointed by the University of Göttingen and the German Primate Center. Photo: Karin Tilch

Watching how the brain thinks and how the heart beats - that is part of the daily research routine of Susann Boretius. Her intention is to understand how living, intact organisms function. The magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) provides a clearer view of the inside of the body. Unlike X-rays, the electromagnetic waves, used in this process, are completely harmless. In her inaugural lecture, Susann Boretius will speak of the possibilities that the MRI provides in the research of the brains, other organs and eventually the organism as a whole. The public event will take place on Tuesday, 26 January 2016, at 4 p.m. in the auditorium of the German Primate Center, Kellnerweg 4, in Göttingen. The talk will be in German language.

High-resolution images of the thinking brain, the beating heart or other organs are the specialties of Susann Boretius. She uses magnetic resonance imaging, to obtain information on the functions of these organs - in mice, non-human primates and humans. Since July 2015, the veterinarian and physicist is a joint professor and head of the Functional Imaging Department at the University of Göttingen and the German Primate Center (DPZ).

"Göttingen is an ideal location to combine my research focus, which is the development of new methods in imaging, with that of the research on biomedical applications," says Susann Boretius. Along with her current team of six, she wants to further develop magnetic resonance imaging and apply it to basic biological and current biomedical issues. The MRI-based methods allow structural, chemical and biophysical insights into the living organisms without harming the organisms. The emphasis will be on brain and gerontology research, but the research team will also work on projects to get a better understanding of diseases and methods of treatment for the heart and lungs.

Susann Boretius studied veterinary medicine at the Humboldt University in Berlin and later worked as a veterinarian at a clinic for horses and small animals. Whilst working as a veterinarian, she studied physics at the Humboldt University in Berlin and concluded her studies at the Georg August University in Göttingen in 2003. In Göttingen, she was employed as a researcher at the biomedical NMR Research GmbH of the Max Planck Institute for biophysical chemistry in the field of magnetic resonance imaging. In 2011, Susann Boretius was awarded a professorship for Biomedical Imaging at the University of Kiel and was also in charge of the imaging platform.