Krystyna Barnard
January 8, 2021

The Department of Radiology this month announced the promotion of Limin Chen, MD, PhD, to Tenured Professor of Radiology.

Since joining Vanderbilt as faculty in 2003, Dr. Chen has focused her research efforts on understanding the mechanisms of pain and spinal cord injury, and on identifying imaging-based biomarkers for the diagnosis and prognosis of spinal cord injury. Her research has been performed in collaboration with colleagues in the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science (VUIIS) and Department of Radiology, as well as those in departments across the Vanderbilt University and Medical Center campuses.

“Dr. Chen is an outstanding neuroscientist and expert in the neuroimaging and neurophysiology of pain and the sensorimotor system,” said John Gore, PhD, Professor of Radiology and Director of VUIIS. “She has made multiple notable contributions to our understanding of brain connectivity and spinal cord injury using an array of advanced techniques including functional MRI, electrophysiology, optical imaging and most recently optogenetics. Her work has pushed Vanderbilt to the forefront of fundamental studies of neural function using imaging methods.”

In total, Dr. Chen has been Principal Investigator (PI) on three National Institutes of Health-funded grants, and one Department of Defense grant. She has also been PI on three multi-PI grants and Co-investigator on five other grants. Additionally, she has authored or coauthored more than 75 articles in leading, peer-reviewed journals such as Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), Neuron, NeuroImage, Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and the Journal of Neuroscience.

In recognition of her contributions to the field of imaging research, Dr. Chen was named a 2016 Distinguished Investigator by the Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research, which is a prestigious honor awarded only to the top 10 percent of academic radiology faculty.

“My career development has benefited greatly from our department's collaborative research environment with VUIIS and across campus,” said Dr. Chen. “The substantial intellectual and infrastructural resources accessible on campus make me feel that I can pursue any new research. My involvement in various grant projects makes me confident that I can make an impactful contribution to our great institution's missions.”

Dr. Chen earned her medical and doctorate degrees from The Fourth Military Medical University in Xi’an, China, prior to completing a Brown-Coxe Postdoctoral Fellowship at Yale University School of Medicine. She remains actively involved in professional organizations, including the American Society for Neuroscience, the International Association for the Study of Pain and the Radiological Society of North America.