The Fat-Water MRI Lab at the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science is dedicated to quantitative mapping of adipose tissue in human and animal subjects using magnetic resonance imaging. The FWMRI Lab applies advanced MRI pulse sequences and signal models to robustly separate fat and water images that can be converted to fat signal fraction maps. Research areas of interest to the FWMRI Lab include segmentation of visceral and subcutaneous depots of white adipose tissue as well as identification and quantification of brown adipose tissue depots.

Fat-Water MRI Lab ROCKET website:


Featured publications

  1. Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Skeletal Muscle Disease. Damon BM, Li K, Dortch RD, Welch EB, Park JH, Buck AK, Towse TF, Does MD, Gochberg DF, Bryant ND (2016) J Vis Exp (118)
    › Primary publication · 28060254 (PubMed) · PMC5226425 (PubMed Central)
  2. Fat-water MRI of a diet-induced obesity mouse model at 15.2T. Ong HH, Webb CD, Gruen ML, Hasty AH, Gore JC, Welch EB (2016) J Med Imaging (Bellingham) 3(2): 026002
    › Primary publication · 27226976 (PubMed) · PMC4877437 (PubMed Central)
  3. Characterizing active and inactive brown adipose tissue in adult humans using PET-CT and MR imaging. Gifford A, Towse TF, Walker RC, Avison MJ, Welch EB (2016) Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 311(1): E95-E104
    › Primary publication · 27166284 (PubMed) · PMC4967150 (PubMed Central)
  4. Multisite, multivendor validation of the accuracy and reproducibility of proton-density fat-fraction quantification at 1.5T and 3T using a fat-water phantom. Hernando D, Sharma SD, Aliyari Ghasabeh M, Alvis BD, Arora SS, Hamilton G, Pan L, Shaffer JM, Sofue K, Szeverenyi NM, Welch EB, Yuan Q, Bashir MR, Kamel IR, Rice MJ, Sirlin CB, Yokoo T, Reeder SB (2017) Magn Reson Med 77(4): 1516-1524
    › Primary publication · 27080068 (PubMed) · PMC4835219 (PubMed Central)
  5. Incorporating dixon multi-echo fat water separation for novel quantitative magnetization transfer of the human optic nerve in vivo. Smith AK, Dortch RD, Dethrage LM, Lyttle BD, Kang H, Welch EB, Smith SA (2017) Magn Reson Med 77(2): 707-716
    › Primary publication · 27037720 (PubMed) · PMC5045743 (PubMed Central)
  6. Correlations between quantitative fat-water magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography in human subcutaneous white adipose tissue. Gifford A, Walker RC, Towse TF, Brian Welch E (2015) J Med Imaging (Bellingham) 2(4): 046001
    › Primary publication · 26702407 (PubMed) · PMC4684077 (PubMed Central)
  7. Imaging methods for analyzing body composition in human obesity and cardiometabolic disease. Seabolt LA, Welch EB, Silver HJ (2015) Ann N Y Acad Sci : 41-59
    › Primary publication · 26250623 (PubMed)
  8. Whole-body continuously moving table fat-water MRI with dynamic B0 shimming at 3 Tesla. Sengupta S, Smith DS, Gifford A, Welch EB (2016) Magn Reson Med 76(1): 183-90
    › Primary publication · 26198380 (PubMed) · PMC4775426 (PubMed Central)
  9. Human brown adipose tissue depots automatically segmented by positron emission tomography/computed tomography and registered magnetic resonance images. Gifford A, Towse TF, Walker RC, Avison MJ, Welch EB (2015) J Vis Exp (96)
    › Primary publication · 25741672 (PubMed) · PMC4354647 (PubMed Central)
  10. Multi-parametric MRI characterization of healthy human thigh muscles at 3.0 T - relaxation, magnetization transfer, fat/water, and diffusion tensor imaging. Li K, Dortch RD, Welch EB, Bryant ND, Buck AK, Towse TF, Gochberg DF, Does MD, Damon BM, Park JH (2014) NMR Biomed 27(9): 1070-84
    › Primary publication · 25066274 (PubMed) · PMC4153695 (PubMed Central)

Community Leaders

Contact Information

Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science
1161 21st Ave South
R0105 MCN
Nashville, TN 37232-2310
615-343-7754 (p)
615-322-0734 (f)

Brian Welch
615-343-7754 (p)
615-322-0734 (f)

Keywords & MeSH Terms

MeSH terms are retrieved from PubMed records. Learn more.

Key: MeSH Term Keyword

Brown adipose tissue Cold Temperature Diabetes Diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging Equipment Design Equipment Failure Analysis Female Humans Image Enhancement Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted Imaging, Three-Dimensional Imaging Science Linear Models Magnetic Resonance Imaging Male MRI Muscular Diseases Optic Nerve Phantoms, Imaging Radiopharmaceuticals Reproducibility of Results Sensitivity and Specificity Ultrasonography White adipose tissue Whole Body Imaging