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Thomas Lang Ph.D.

Quantitative Musculoskeletal Imaging

Thomas Lang Ph.D.

Thomas F. Lang, PhD, is the Associate Dean for Research in the School of Dentistry, a Professor in Residence, a faculty member of the Musculoskeletal Quantitative Imaging Research Group, and he leads the Musculoskeletal CT Imaging Research Group at the University of California, San Francisco. Since 2010, Dr. Lang has served as Chair of the UCSF Chancellor’s Conflict of Interest Advisory Committee. Clinically, Dr. Lang and his colleagues are establishing a research program using CT and PET/CT to measure physical traits, muscle size, adiposity, and protein synthesis rate as markers of frailty. Dr. Lang obtained his BA in Chemistry at the University of Chicago in 1983, and completed his PhD in Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley in 1990, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in Radiology Imaging at UCSF in 1992.

The focus of Dr Lang's Research is to develop quantitative analytic methods centered on bettering our understanding of two major chronic problems that affect the growing elderly population: osteoporosis, a main cause of age-related fractures, and sarcopenia, a loss of skeletal muscle strength, endurance and function. The aim of this research is to characterize skeletal density, geometry and indices of strength from volumetric CT scans of the hip and spine, as well as similar imaging based methods to quantify skeletal muscle anatomy and function. With the growth of his research group, Dr. Lang and his group have continued a robust program in methods development, integrating density and structured analysis with serial image registration to improve sensitivity for detecting changes in longitudinal measures, and finite element modeling in order to understand how density and structure measures of bones are related to bone strength, stiffness, and factures.

Presently, Dr. Lang is principal investigator on two NIH R01 projects and is collaborating with NASA Johnson Space Center’s using quantitative assessments to study the effect of long-duration spaceflight and prolonged mechanical unloading on skeletal density, structure, and strength. Dr. Lang has served as Principal Investigator and Co-Principal Investigator of many NIH grants. He has over 110 published articles, in addition to other contributions including patents, review articles and book chapters.

Selected publications:

Nielson CM, Liu CT, Smith AV, Ackert-Bicknell CL, Reppe S, Johanna J, Wassel C, Register TC, Oei L, Alonso Lopez N, Oei EH, Parimi N, Samelson EJ, Nalls MA, Zmuda J, Lang T, Bouxsein M, Latourelle J, Claussnitzer M, Siggeirsdottir K, Srikanth P, Lorentzen E, Vandenput L, Langefeld C, Raffield L, Terry G, Cox AJ, Allison MA, Criqui MH, Bowden D, Ikram MA, Mellström D, Karlsson MK, Carr J, Budoff M, Phillips C, Cupples LA, Chou WC, Myers RH, Ralston SH, Gautvik KM, Cawthon PM, Cummings S, Karasik D, Rivadeneira F, Gudnason V, Orwoll ES, Harris TB, Ohlsson C, Kiel DP, Hsu YH, et al. Novel Genetic Variants are Associated With Increased Vertebral Volumetric BMD, Reduced Vertebral Fracture Risk, and Increased Expression of SCL1A3 and EPHB2. J Bone Miner Res. 2016 Aug 1. PMID: 27476799.

Carballido-Gamio J, Bonaretti S, Saeed I, Harnish R, Recker R, Burghardt AJ, Keyak JH, Harris T, Khosla S,Lang TF. Automatic multi-parametric quantification of the proximal femur with quantitative computed tomography. Quant Imaging Med Surg. 2015 Aug; 5(4):552-68. PMID: 26435919; PMCID: PMC4559986.

Heilmeier U, Carpenter DR, Patsch JM, Harnish R, Joseph GB, Burghardt AJ, Baum T, Schwartz AVLang TFLink TM. Volumetric femoral BMD, bone geometry, and serum sclerostin levels differ between type 2 diabetic postmenopausal women with and without fragility fractures. Osteoporos Int. 2015 Apr; 26(4):1283-93. PMID: 25582311.

Bonaretti S, Carpenter RD, Saeed I, Burghardt AJ, Yu L, Bruesewitz M, Khosla S, Lang T. Novel anthropomorphic hip phantom corrects systemic interscanner differences in proximal femoral vBMD. Phys Med Biol. 2014 Dec 21; 59(24):7819-34. PMID: 25419618; PMCID: PMC4442068 [Available on 12/21/15].

Carpenter RD, Saeed I, Bonaretti S, Schreck C, Keyak JH, Streeper T, Harris TB, Lang TF. Inter-scanner differences in in vivo QCT measurements of the density and strength of the proximal femur remain after correction with anthropomorphic standardization phantoms. Med Eng Phys. 2014 Oct; 36(10):1225-32. PMID: 25001172; PMCID: PMC4589175.

Lang TF, Saeed IH, Streeper T, Carballido-Gamio J, Harnish RJ, Frassetto LA, Lee SM, Sibonga JD, Keyak JH, Spiering BA, Grodsinsky CM, Bloomberg JJ, Cavanagh PR. Spatial heterogeneity in the response of the proximal femur to two lower-body resistance exercise regimens. J Bone Miner Res. 2014 Jun; 29(6):1337-45. PMID: 24293094; PMCID: PMC4029859.

Harnish R, Prevrhal S, Alavi A, Zaidi H, Lang TF. The effect of metal artefact reduction on CT-based attenuation correction for PET imaging in the vicinity of metallic hip implants: a phantom study. Ann Nucl Med. 2014 Jul; 28(6):540-50. PMID: 24710757; PMCID: PMC4101148.

Carballido-Gamio J, Harnish R, Saeed I, Streeper T, Sigurdsson S, Amin S, Atkinson EJ, Therneau TM, Siggeirsdottir K, Cheng X, Melton LJ, Keyak JH, Gudnason V, Khosla S, Harris TB, Lang TF. Structural patterns of the proximal femur in relation to age and hip fracture risk in women. Bone. 2013 Nov; 57(1):290-9. PMID: 23981658; PMCID: PMC3809121.

Keyak JH, Sigurdsson S, Karlsdottir GS, Oskarsdottir D, Sigmarsdottir A, Kornak J, Harris TB, Sigurdsson G, Jonsson BY, Siggeirsdottir K, Eiriksdottir G, Gudnason V, Lang TF. Effect of finite element model loading condition on fracture risk assessment in men and women: the AGES-Reykjavik study. Bone. 2013 Nov; 57(1):18-29. PMID: 23907032; PMCID: PMC3786229.

Carballido-Gamio J, Harnish R, Saeed I, Streeper T, Sigurdsson S, Amin S, Atkinson EJ, Therneau TM, Siggeirsdottir K, Cheng X, Melton LJ, Keyak J, Gudnason V, Khosla S, Harris TB, Lang TF. Proximal femoral density distribution and structure in relation to age and hip fracture risk in women. J Bone Miner Res. 2013 Mar; 28(3):537-46. PMID: 23109068; PMCID: PMC3578081.