A Visionary Gift in the Field of Neuroimaging

Inspired by Stony Brook’s history in the field of medical imaging, two Stony Brook couples have teamed up to help acquire a PET/CT scanner for the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University. Housed in Stony Brook’s Medical and Research Translation (MART) building, the PET/CT scanner could dramatically impact the path of future research in psychiatry and neurology.

The initial gift of $950,000 given by Ivana Stolnik-Lourie ’16 and Robert Lourie was created as a challenge grant, with the hopes of establishing the MART as a center for pioneering research in the field of neuroimaging.

Robert Lourie and Ivana Stolnik-Lourie ’16

Robert Lourie and Ivana Stolnik-Lourie ’16

“Understanding the brain is as significant a scientific challenge for this century as understanding the atom was for the last,” said Robert Lourie. “With a PET/CT scanner dedicated full-time to research, the Renaissance School of Medicine will remain at the cutting edge of this important research.”

Advancements in neuroimaging can provide new insights not only into the working of the brain but can also help identify cutting-edge treatment methods, provide targets for drug development and allow researchers to examine brain tissue at a cellular level. 

Longtime friends of Stony Brook – Robert Lourie is a former member of the Stony Brook Foundation Board of Trustees and Ivana Stolnik-Lourie is a graduate of the University – the couple’s gift continues their legacy of support for translational research, which previously included the funding of the Lourie Endowed Chair in Psychiatry.   

Their hope was that the matching challenge would inspire other donors.

It turns out they didn’t have to wait long. 

Lalit and Kavita Bahl

Lalit and Kavita Bahl

When Kavita and Lalit Bahl heard about the Louries’ challenge, they decided to join them, by funding the full $950,000 needed to meet their match.

The Bahls have demonstrated a deep commitment to helping Stony Brook acquire state-of-the-art medical imaging technology.

Inspired by Stony Brook’s history in medical imaging discoveries – which began in the 1970s when a Stony Brook chemistry professor, Paul Lauterbur, developed magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology and subsequently received a Nobel Prize – the Bahls established a one-of-a-kind cancer imaging research program, the Bahl Center for Metabolomics and Imaging, which is also housed in the MART.

“Stony Brook has been a world-class leader in the use of advanced imaging technology for research and clinical purposes,” said Lalit Bahl. “It is our hope that the purchase of the PET/CT scanner will not only enable advanced research in the field of psychiatry, but will also lead to new discoveries.”

Executive Vice President for Health Sciences at Stony Brook University Hal Paz, MD, agrees that the Renaissance School is an ideal environment for researchers to collaborate and innovate. 

“With this gift, Stony Brook will be able to continue its proud legacy in the field of biomedical imaging,” said Dr. Paz. “We believe that translational research focused on the analysis of brain images holds tremendous promise and we are tremendously grateful to the Louries and the Bahls for their extraordinary gift.”

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