Dr. Kang Kim is an Associate Professor of Medicine and of Bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh and the Heart and Vascular Institute, UPMC.
Dr. Kim earned his Bachelor’s in Educational Physics at Seoul National University in Seoul, South Korea. He then went to the University of Pierre & Marie Curie (Paris 6) in Paris, France, for his Master’s before he moved to the United States for his PhD in Acoustics at Pennsylvania State University. He then won a postdoctoral fellowship in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Michigan.
Dr. Kim’s research seeks to develop and translate state-of-the-art noninvasive ultrasound imaging technologies to (1) improve disease diagnosis, (2) guide therapeutic strategies, and (3) evaluate therapeutic efficacy, especially in cardiovascular applications. His research emphasis is on development and application of multi-modality imaging systems that are based on a fundamental understanding of how sound and light interact with soft tissues, and are capable of characterizing structural, mechanical, compositional properties of tissues and organs and their underlying biological activities in cellular level.
In his research, three independent, but related, imaging technologies are under active investigation. They are:
ultrasound elasticity imaging (UEI), shear wave imaging (SWI), and acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) imaging non-invasively assess the global and regional mechanical properties of the atherosclerotic plaques
ultrasound thermal strain imaging (TSI) strongly contrasts lipids from the surrounding non-lipid tissues
photoacoustic molecular imaging (PMI) combines laser and ultrasound technologies to identify inflammatory biomarkers that may enable early detection of atherosclerosis as well as monitoring on-going inflammation in plaques
These three imaging modalities may also be combined to provide a more complete characterization of plaque vulnerability. Noninvasive imaging technologies such as these will also be pivotal for preclinical animal studies, significantly reducing animal numbers, variation between subjects, and shortening the study period. In recent years, the feasibility of these technologies on tissue engineering and regenerative medicine has been demonstrated using polyurethane-based scaffolds in a small animal abdominal repair model as well as vascular graft model.
Dr. Kim is a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a member of the Acoustical Society of America. He is an Editorial Board Member of the International Journal of Medical Engineering and Informatics. He is also involved with several NIH peer review committees.
Dr. Kim leads the Multi-Modality Biomedical Ultrasound Imaging Lab at the University of Pittsburgh, and he is also a faculty member of the Center for Ultrasound Molecular Imaging and Therapeutics at UPMC.
View Dr. Kim’s publications here.