We are excited to announce that the Rudi Schulte Research Institute (RSRI) and Mark Wagshul, Ph.D., will be conducting a joint research venture entitled, “MR Elastography: A noninvasive tool for management of shunted pediatric hydrocephalus.” Dr. Wagshul is an Associate Professor in the department of radiology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Dr. Wagshul received a B.A. in physics from Rutgers University and a Ph.D. in physics from Harvard University. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Institute for Standards and Technology. His proposed project utilizes the noninvasive MRI-based technique, magnetic resonance elastography (MRE), to determine the role
which brain compliance plays in pediatric hydrocephalus. There are three aims which the researcher will be seeking: determining the relationship between the MRI measures of brain elastance and patient status; demonstrating the brain regions which are most affected by hydrocephalus; and finally, establishing the relationship between brain elastance and intracranial pressure. The ultimate objective is to use this new knowledge about brain elasticity to drive the development of alternative treatments for slit ventricle syndrome. Slit ventricle syndrome presents as severe headaches in shunted individuals with apparently working shunts.
The Rudi Schulte Research Institute partnered with the Hydrocephalus Association in July 2012 with the goal of funding significant advances in the treatment of hydrocephalus. To that end, a Request for Research Proposals in Cerebrospinal Fluid Production, Flow, and Regulation Therapeutics and Diagnostics was released and applications were reviewed by RSRI and our 2013 Scientific and Medical Review Committee (SMRC), chaired by Donna Ferriero, M.D., a Pediatric Neurologist from the University of California San Francisco Benioff Children’s Hospital and a member of the NIH NINDS Advisory Council since 2010. The review resulted in Dr. Wagshul’s research being selected for this joint venture, awarding Dr. Wagshul $600,000 over three years to conduct the joint research project. HA and RSRI are excited about Dr. Wagshul’s future work and are eager to see the results from this important research.
Rudi Schulte was one of the two founders of PS Medical, which developed the Delta and Strata valves used in the treatment of hydrocephalus. The company was later sold to Medtronic, which has continued to advance those shunt technologies. Rudi Schulte founded the Rudi Schulte Research Institute in 1974 to continue research into hydrocephalus. The Hydrocephalus Association is pleased to have expanded our partnership to help RSRI target research that is meaningful to our members.