Meet the Team

Meet the Principal Investigator

Jae Mo Park, Ph.D.

Jae Mo Park, Ph.D.

Academic Appointments

  • Associate Professor, Advanced Imaging Research Center, UT Southwestern
  • Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, UT Southwestern
  • Associate Professor, Department of Radiology, UT Southwestern
  • Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering (affiliated), UT Dallas

Dr. Park received all of his degrees in Electrical Engineering. His doctoral work at Stanford University was focused on technical developments of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and spectroscopic imaging (MRSI) with application to preclinical brain tumor metabolism. Following completion of his Ph.D. in 2012, he broadened his research into advanced biomedical imaging as a postdoctoral research fellow and a research associate in the Department of Radiology at Stanford School of Medicine. He moved to the Advanced Imaging Research Center at the UT Southwestern in 2016 as an Assistant Professor. He also joined the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UT Dallas in 2017. He has been an Associate Professor of the Advanced Imaging Research Center, Department of Biomedical Engineering, and Department of Radiology at UT Southwestern since 2022 when he received his tenure.

Current Lab Members

Crystal E. Harrison portrait

Crystal E. Harrison, Ph.D.

Research Scientist I Email 

Dr. Harrison received her BS in Physics at the University of Texas at Austin in 2003. She later got her MS and PhD, both in Physics, from the University of Texas at Dallas studying the metabolism of pyruvate in cancer using hyperpolarized 13C spectroscopy and imaging. Dr. Harrison held two postdoctoral positions at UT Southwestern in the Advanced Imaging Research Center and Radiology. Her research interests include MR sequence programming, data reconstruction, and mathematical modeling. Dr. Harrison is the Regulatory Manger of Human Studies at the AIRC, the primary operator of the human hyperpolarizer, the SPINlab®, and a mom of three.

Jun Chen portrait

Jun Chen, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow I Email

Dr. Chen graduated with a BA in Biomedical Sciences from Imperial College London in 2011. Afterwards, she obtained her PhD from Department of Biochemistry of UT Southwestern in 2017 where she researched how TORC1 regulates nitrogenic cataplerotic metabolism in response to amino acid starvation. She is interested in developing new probes for assessing intermediary metabolism and exploring the pathophysiological metabolism using 13C/15N-labeled MR imaging and spectroscopy.

Kelley Derner's portrait

Kelley Derner, R.N.

Research Nurse & Coordinator I Email 

She received her BS in Psychology from Texas A&M University and in Nursing from Texas Woman's University. Kelley joined the lab in 2022 as a research nurse and coordinator. Prior to joining the lab, she worked for UT Southwestern Medical Center, including the AIRC human core.

Leon Khalyavin portrait

Leon Khalyavin, B.S.

Graduate Student I Email 

Leon is a graduate student of Electrical Engineering at the University of Texas at Dallas. He received his BS from UT Dallas in 2022. His research interests include machine learning, robotics, and image processing. His project in the lab is about restoration of contaminated MR signals using machine learning algorithms.

Maheen Zaidi portrait

Maheen Zaidi, B.S.

Research Assistant I Email

Maheen received her BS in Psychology and Neurobiology (minor) from the University of Texas at Dallas in 2022. Her current work involves brain imaging analysis using Statistical Parametric Mapping (SPM) to investigate the relationship between metabolic activation and BOLD fMRI in the brain. Maheen is also involved in traumatic brain injury studies and NMR isotopomer analysis of brain tissue extracts.

Mai Huynh portrait

Mai Huynh, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow I Email 

Dr. Huynh received her PhD in Chemistry from the University of Texas at Dallas where she researched the interaction of bovine serum albumin coated-MWNTs and macrophages using SR-A knockout RAW 264.7 cells that were generated using CRISPR-Cas9 technology. She is interested in synthesizing and developing the 13C-labeled metabolic probes generated by dynamic nuclear polarization and parahydrogen induced polarization techniques that can be used as a tracer in in vivo metabolism study and MRI.

Richard Martin portrait

Richard Martin, B.S.

Biomedical Engineer I Email

Richard is a biomedical engineering specialist with years of experience in biomedical instrumentation, electro-mechanical design fabrication, systems integration, and equipment evaluation. After working as a telecom engineer at MCI/WORLDCOM and a senior engineering technician at Texas Instruments, he joined the Advanced Imaging Research Center in 2008. He maintains NMR and MRI equipment, and develops hardware such as MR RF coils. He is also responsible for new AIRC facility installations, including interfacing with vendors, planners to ensure compliance with plumbing, electrical & HVAC to meet specific requirements, for example clinical MRI, DNP polarizers, and NMR systems.

Sung-Han (Hank) Lin portrait

Sung-Han (Hank) Lin, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow I Email

Dr. Lin obtained his BS from National Taiwan University and PhD from Institute of Clinical Medical Science of Chang Gung University in 2021, where he mainly focused on the image-based machine learning algorithm for early diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases. He is interested in developing novel MR pulse sequences and image reconstruction algorithm to accelerate hyperpolarized 13C imaging.

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Zohreh Erfani, M.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow I Email 

Dr. Erfani was born and raised in Ilam in the west of Iran. Prior joining the lab, she studied medicine at Tehran University of Medical Sciences. She is interested in imaging and cellular metabolism in different neurological conditions. She enjoys learning new things and exploring the world.


  • Edward P. Hackett, M.S.
    • Research Assistant (2017 - 2020)
    • Next position: MD Candidate, Medical College of Wisconsin (Wisconsin, USA)
  • Pranav Matthews, B.S.
    • Undergraduate Student of UTD Electrical Engineering (2020 - 2021)
    • Next position: PhD Candidate, Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia, USA)
  • Galen Reed, Ph.D.
    • Research Scientist, GE Healthcare (2017 - 2021)
    • Next position: Senior Computer Vision Engineer, Truvian (California, USA)
  • Junjie Ma, Ph.D.
    • Graduate Student of the UTSW, Biomedical Engineering (2017 - 2021)
    • Next position: Cardiac MRI Scientist, GE Healthcare (New York, USA)
  • Shiori Harima
    • High School Student, Frisco High School (2022 - 2022)
    • Next position: B.S. Candidate, Johns Hopkins University (Maryland, USA)
  • Enya-Angel Hachem, B.S.
    • Undergraduate Student of UTD Electrical Engineering (2022 - 2023)
    • Next position: Toyota Motor Corp. (Texas, USA)
  • Sarah Al Nemri, B.A.
    • Research Assistant (2022 - 2023)
    • Next position: M.S. Candidate, University of North Texas (Texas, USA)