Bastiaan Driehuys

Professor of Radiology

Office Location: 
161-B Bryan Research, 311 Research Drive, Durham, NC 27710
Front Office Address: 
Box 3302 Med Ctr, Durham, NC 27710
(919) 684-7786


My research program is focused on developing and applying hyperpolarized gases to enable fundamentally new applications in MRI. Currently we use this technology to non-invasively image pulmonary function in 3D. Hyperpolarization involves aligning nuclei to a high degree to enhance their MRI signal by 5-6 orders of magnitude. Thus, despite the low density of gases relative to water (the ordinary signal source in MRI), they can be imaged at high-resolution in a single breath. This technology leads to a host of interesting areas of study including: investigating the basic physics of hyperpolarization, developing new MR methods and hardware for image acquisition, image analysis and quantification, and of, course applying this technology to a host of chronic diseases including, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and pulmonary fibrosis.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., Princeton University 1995

Selected Grants

Early Detection of Changes in Pulmonary Gas Exchange by Hyperpolarized Xe MRI awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2011 to 2021

Non-invasive Diagnosis of Pulmonary Vascular Disease Using Inhaled 129Xe MRI awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2016 to 2019

Hyperpolarized 129Xe MR Imaging of the Lung Function in Healthy Volunteers and Subjects with Pulmonary Disease awarded by Siemens Medical Solutions USA, Inc. (Principal Investigator). 2016 to 2019

Training in Medical Imaging awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 2003 to 2019

Using MRI To Visualize Regional Therapy Response In Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2015 to 2019

Human Lung Regional Ventilation Defect Severity Measured by Fluorine-19 Gas MRI awarded by National Institutes of Health (Investigator). 2012 to 2018

Detecting ventilation and gas exchange abnormalities by 129Xe MRI in alpha-1 antitrypsin carriers awarded by CSL Behring LLC (Principal Investigator). 2016 to 2017

Quantitative 129Xe Gas Exchange MRI for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis awarded by Gilead Sciences, Inc. (Principal Investigator). 2015 to 2017

Sensitive and Specific Molecular Imaging of Pulmonary Nodules awarded by National Institutes of Health (Principal Investigator). 2010 to 2016

Time-Resolved 129Xe Ventilation-Perfusion MRI in Rat Models of Acute Lung Injury awarded by National Institutes of Health (Mentor). 2012 to 2014


Robertson, SH, Virgincar, RS, Bier, EA, He, M, Schrank, GM, Smigla, RM, Rackley, C, McAdams, HP, and Driehuys, B. "Uncovering a third dissolved-phase 129 Xe resonance in the human lung: Quantifying spectroscopic features in healthy subjects and patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis." Magnetic resonance in medicine 78.4 (October 2017): 1306-1315. Full Text

Song, EJ, Kelsey, CR, Driehuys, B, and Rankine, L. "Functional airway obstruction observed with hyperpolarized 129 Xenon-MRI." Journal of medical imaging and radiation oncology (September 22, 2017). Full Text

Wang, JM, Robertson, SH, Wang, Z, He, M, Virgincar, RS, Schrank, GM, Smigla, RM, O'Riordan, TG, Sundy, J, Ebner, L, Rackley, CR, McAdams, P, and Driehuys, B. "Using hyperpolarized (129)Xe MRI to quantify regional gas transfer in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis." Thorax (August 31, 2017). Full Text

Flower, C, Freeman, MS, Plue, M, and Driehuys, B. "Electron microscopic observations of Rb particles and pitting in 129Xe spin-exchange optical pumping cells." Journal of applied physics 122.2 (July 11, 2017): 024902-. Full Text

Mahmood, K, Ebner, L, He, M, Robertson, SH, Wang, Z, McAdams, HP, Wahidi, MM, Shofer, SL, Huang, YT, and Driehuys, B. "Novel Magnetic Resonance Imaging for Assessment of Bronchial Stenosis in Lung Transplant Recipients." American journal of transplantation : official journal of the American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Transplant Surgeons 17.7 (July 2017): 1895-1904. Full Text

Wang, Z, Robertson, SH, Wang, J, He, M, Virgincar, RS, Schrank, GM, Bier, EA, Rajagopal, S, Huang, YC, O'Riordan, TG, Rackley, CR, McAdams, HP, and Driehuys, B. "Quantitative analysis of hyperpolarized 129 Xe gas transfer MRI." Medical physics 44.6 (June 2017): 2415-2428. Full Text

Virgincar, RS, Robertson, SH, Nouls, J, Degan, S, Schrank, GM, He, M, and Driehuys, B. "Establishing an accurate gas phase reference frequency to quantify 129 Xe chemical shifts in vivo." Magnetic resonance in medicine 77.4 (April 2017): 1438-1445. Full Text

House, JS, Nichols, CE, Li, H, Brandenberger, C, Virgincar, RS, DeGraff, LM, Driehuys, B, Zeldin, DC, and London, SJ. "Vagal innervation is required for pulmonary function phenotype in Htr4-/- mice." American journal of physiology. Lung cellular and molecular physiology 312.4 (April 2017): L520-L530. Full Text

Ebner, L, Kammerman, J, Driehuys, B, Schiebler, ML, Cadman, RV, and Fain, SB. "The role of hyperpolarized 129xenon in MR imaging of pulmonary function." European journal of radiology 86 (January 2017): 343-352. (Review) Full Text


Nichols, C, House, J, Li, H, Brandenberger, C, Virgincar, R, Miller, L, Driehuys, B, Zeldin, D, and London, S. "Htr4 Regulates Pulmonary Function Through Neural Innervation." 2017.

He, M, Robertson, SH, Wang, JM, Que, LG, Mahmood, K, Driehuys, B, and Huang, Y-C. "Characterizing The Ventilation Distribution In Healthy Normal Subjects To Establish Robust Quantitative Analysis Of 129xe Mri." 2016.

Wang, JM, Robertson, SH, He, M, Virgincar, RS, Schrank, GM, Smigla, R, O'Riordan, T, Sundy, J, Ebner, L, Rackley, CR, McAdams, HP, and Driehuys, B. "Using Hyperpolarized 129xe Imaging To Quantify Apical Vs. Basal And Central Vs. Peripheral Gas Exchange Impairment In Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis." 2016.

He, M, Robertson, SH, Wang, JM, Rackley, CR, McAdams, HP, and Driehuys, B. "Differentiating Early Stage And Later Stage Ipf Using Hyperpolarized 129xe Ventilation Mri." 2016.

Virgincar, RS, Nouls, J, He, M, Kaushik, SS, Potts, E, Foster, WM, Slipetz, DM, Hedlund, L, and Driehuys, B. "Quantitative Analysis Of 3he And 1h Mr Images Of Regional Pulmonary Injury In House-Dust-Mite Allergic Mice." 2013.

Kaushik, SS, Liljeroth, M, Virgincar, RS, Robertson, SH, Davies, J, Stiles, J, Kelly, KT, Foster, WM, Morrison, L, McAdams, HP, and Driehuys, B. "Reproducibility Of Hyperpolarized 129xe Mri: Alveolar Capillary Gas-Transfer Spectroscopy And Imaging." 2013.

Driehuys, B, Raidy, T, Pollaro, J, Johnson, A, Dewhirst, M, Marks, L, and Vujaskovic, Z. "Hyperpolarized 129Xe MRI for functional assessment of radiation-induced lung injury." 2005. Full Text