Dr. Cao has more than 25 years of experience in MRI, including technical development, image analysis and clinical application. She has built and leads a functional imaging group in the Department of Radiation Oncology at University of Michigan since 2003. The research projects of the group have been focused on optimization of MRI for radiation therapy, geometric distortion characterization, monitoring and correction of MR images, MRCT creation, physiological parameter quantification, tumor target definition for radiation therapy, tumor and normal tissue response assessment, and physiological-response based adaptation of radiation therapy.
Under Dr. Cao's leadership, this group has developed an infrastructure for quantitative imaging for radiation therapy. They have been implementing, developing and validating pharmacokinetic models for quantification of dynamic contrast enhanced (DCE) MRI for tumor response assessment in head-and neck cancer and glioblastoma, and for liver function and cognitive function assessment during and after radiation therapy. Recently, they have been developing and validating high b-value diffusion weighted imaging for quantification of cellularity and for radiation target definition in glioblastoma.
Dr. Cao is a member of the USA NCI Quantitative Imaging Network (QIN) through U01 funding, and participates in collaborative projects for standardization, validation and utilization of quantitative imaging. Her research group is funded by USA NIH and industry grants.
Areas of Interest
- Quantitative imaging for tumor and normal tissue therapy response assessment
- PhD, Ohio State University, 1987
- PI and co-PI on NIH/NCI 1U01CA183848 and RO1CA184153
- Co-I on NIH RO1 EB016079 and P01 CA059827
- Co-I on industrial research grants from Siemens Healthenieer and Epicentrix, Inc.
Selected from over 150 publications
- Wang H, Feng M, Jackson A, Ten Haken RK, Lawrence TS, Cao Y. The local and global function of the liver Based on portal venous perfusion image. Int J Rad Onc Biol Phy. 94(1):181-188 (2016). PMID:26700712. PMCID:PMC4692182.
- Wang P, Popovtzer A, Eisbruch A, Cao Y. An Approach to identify, from DCE MRI, significant subvolumes of tumors related to outcomes in advanced head-and-neck cancer. Med Phys. 39(8):5277-85, 2012. PMID: 22894453 PMCID: PMC3422362
- Cao Y, Nagesh V, Hamstra D, Tsien CI, Ross BD, Chenevert TL, Junck L, Lawrence TS. The extent and severity of vascular leakage as evidence of tumor aggressiveness in high-grade gliomas. Cancer Res. 66(17):8912-8917, 2006. PMID 16951209
- Cao Y, Tsien CI, Shen Z, Tatro DS, Ten Haken R, Kessler ML, Chenevert TL, Lawrence TS. The use of MRI to assess blood-brain/blood-glioma barrier opening during a course of conformal radiotherapy. J Clin Oncol. 23(18):4127-4136, 2005. PMID: 15961760
- Cao Y, Vikingstad EM, Huttenlocher PR, Towle VL, Levin DN. Functional magnetic resonance studies of the reorganization of the human hand sensorimotor area after unilateral brain injury in the perinatal period. Proc. Natl Acad Sci USA. 91(20):9612-9616, 1994.