Fully optimized magnetic resonance spectroscopy for early cancer diagnostics – Dzevad Belkic's Group

Our work covers diagnostics and therapy. We focus on mathematically-optimized magnetic resonance spectroscopy for early cancer diagnostics. We also study dose-planning systems for cancer therapy and atomic/molecular physics relevant to oncology. These are within a multi-level, patient-centered strategy with quality-of-life, treatment and clinical monitoring as an integrated whole. Screening, cancer risk factors, healthy return to work and other work-related issues are also considered.

Professor Dzevad Belkic

Dževad Belkić


Dževad Belkić is a theoretical physicist. He is professor of Mathematical Radiation Physics at Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden. His current research activities are in atomic collision physics, radiation physics, radiobiology, magnetic resonance physics and mathematical physics. In atomic heavy-particle collision physics, his past and current work encompasses many problems reflecting major challenges in this research field, such as theory of charge exchange and ionization at high non-relativistic energies.

He is one of the world’s leading experts on the Coulomb asymptotic convergence problem, distorted wave representations and perturbation expansions methods. He is known for furthering the powerful and versatile continuum distorted wave method and its derivatives that were advantageously exported to ion-atom and photon-atom collisions and also found their useful applications in medical physics. In radiation physics, Dževad Belkić works on the passage of fast electrons and multiply-charged ions through tissue, as needed in radiation therapy in medicine. Here he furthers both deterministic methods through the Boltzmann equation and stochastic simulations via Monte Carlo computations. In radiobiology, his research entails mathematical modeling for cell survival, with the main emphasis on mechanistic approaches by including the chief pathways for survival of cells under irradiation during radiotherapy.

In magnetic resonance physics, Dževad Belkić works on magnetic resonance spectroscopy with the main applications to medical diagnostics, aided critically by high-resolution parametric signal processors that go beyond the conventional shape estimations of spectra and fitting approaches to quantification. The leading processor here is his fast Padé transform for exact spectral analysis of generic time signals and unequivocal signal-noise separation via Froissart doublets or pole-zero cancellations in response functions. In mathematical physics, he works on many problems including the derivation of analytical expressions for scattering integrals or bound-free form factors, for rational response functions in signal processing, and for coupling parameters in the nearest neighbour approximation, which is one of the most frequently used methods in physics and chemistry.

Dževad Belkić has published more than 200 scientific works, which have received over 3000 citations. His six books “Principles of Quantum Scattering Theory”, “Quantum Mechanical Signal Processing and Spectral Analysis” “Quantum Theory of High-Energy Ion-Atom Collisions” and “Signal Processing in Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy with Biomedical Applications”, “Fast Ion-Atom and Ion-Molecule Collisions” and Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Spectroscopy Vol. 3 of the Comprehensive Biomedical Physics were published by the Institute of Physics Publishing, Taylor & Francis, World Scientific and Elsevier in 2003, 2004, 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2014 respectively. Among these have been the top-selling physics books. Professor Belkić has received numerous international awards for his scientific research, including the triple guest professorship in Atomic Physics from the Nobel Foundation and the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.


PhD Karen Belkic

Karen Belkić


Karen (maiden name Edinger) Belkić is a clinical scientist with a PhD in neuroscience and physician specialist in internal medicine. She is adjunct professor of preventive medicine at the University of Southern California, School of Medicine, Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research and at the Claremont Graduate University School of Community and Global Health. She is also affiliated to the Oncology and Pathology Department of Karolinska Institutet, where she holds a scientific tenure position. She earned her M.D. degree at University of Southern California School of Medicine.

Her research activities are broad within several areas including preventive medicine, diagnostics and rehabilitation. In stress research and in molecular imaging, she has five published books and over 100 full length papers in peer-reviewed journals with over 2000 citations. She has twice been co-editor of special topical issues in peer-reviewed international journals. Her work has strived to bridge clinical and basic scientific domains, seeking to answer to both these callings, by addressing difficult questions raised by multi-disciplinary, translational research. Her major goal has been to find non-invasive, sensitive and specific tools that can identify initial and often reversible changes, at a stage when timely intervention could be most effective. Her interest and expertize is in early detection, risk assessment and prevention with a focus on cancer and heart disease, with attention to psychosocial factors and the potential mediating mechanisms. Her current scientific activity is focused upon improvement of early cancer detection through in vivo magnetic resonance by enhancing the diagnostic information obtained by applying modern advances in signal and imaging processing to signals encoded from patients with cancers, and comparing these to findings from non-malignant tissue. Younger women at high risk for breast and ovarian cancer are a particular target group. With her concern for vulnerable groups, Dr. Belkić also addresses diagnostic issues among children, focusing upon pediatric neuro-oncology.

Karen Belkić has taken a broad view, looking not just at the immediate (i.e., proximal) markers of risk, but taking into account the more distal, and potentially key, determinants of disease. Thus, she has been very interested in how the environment (especially the work environment) impacts upon target organs, often mediated by the central nervous system. Within this framework, she has developed multi-level models. These incorporate, inter alia, non-linear, parametric methods in signal processing in relation to multiple physiological time signals for functional diagnostic testing. She is the originator of the widely implemented “Occupational Stressor Index”, a practical diagnostic tool for assessment and subsequent modification of the work environment. She is involved in risk assessment and determinants of adherence to cancer screening guidelines among vulnerable groups as well as design, implementation and testing of interventions for patients with cancer to return to health-promoting work conditions.

Karen Belkić has a special interest in pedagogy, in particular to help medical students and physicians at various levels of training acquire an appreciation of the importance of signal processing for medical diagnostics and to be able to identify situations in which this could be of critical significance in the clinical context, especially for cancer diagnostics.

Atom and Molecular Physics and Optics Cancer and Oncology Occupational Health and Environmental Health Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
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