Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging (MBIB) interim Division Director Junko Yano announced a change in leadership of the Cellular and Tissue Imaging (CTI) Department, effective January 1, 2023. Carolyn Larabell is stepping down as the Department Head, a position she has served in since July 2020. She will continue to be a member of the MBIB management team, serving as senior advisor to the Division Director. Suzanne Baker, a staff scientist whose research focuses on the methodology behind PET imaging and pharmacokinetic modeling applied to research in aging and dementia, will serve as the new CTI Department Head.
According to Baker, her path to the MBIB team has been a “weird journey” punctuated with influential mentors and serendipitously timed advancements in the field. Now, after nearly 20 years with Berkeley Lab, she maintains a regular midday break at the nearby lap pool, swearing that these water workouts help her stay focused and productive while working toward understanding how the development of Alzheimer disease changes the brain.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently awarded more than $40 million, distributed over five years, for a project that aims to compare two positron emission tomography (PET) imaging agents widely used to visualize misfolded tau protein—one of the hallmarks of Alzheimer disease (AD) and other dementias—in living brains. The effort will be led by co-principal investigators Suzanne Baker, a computational staff scientist in the Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging (MBIB) Division, and Tharick Pascoal, an assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt).