L. Tugan Muftuler, PhD

Associate Professor of Neurosurgery


Dr. Muftuler’s primary research interest is to develop novel MRI acquisition, processing and analysis techniques to detect pathophysiological changes caused by various diseases. The technologies that are established in Dr. Muftuler’s lab have been used in neuroimaging, musculoskeletal imaging and cancer imaging studies.

Our objective is to establish a strong research program in MRI technology and build productive collaborations with researchers from diverse backgrounds, which is essential to address increasingly complex clinical problems.

Education & Training

  • BSc in Electrical Electronics Engineering (Specialized on RF and Microwave eng.), Orta Dogu Technical University, Ankara, Turkey (1987)
  • M.Sc. in Electrical Electronics Engineering, Orta Dogu Technical University, Ankara, Turkey (1987 – 1990)
    High speed, two-frame video data acquisition system for digital subtraction angiography.
  • Ph.D. in Electrical Electronics Engineering with Y. Ziya Ider, Orta Dogu Technical University, Ankara, Turkey (1990 – 1996)
    Measurement of Magnetic Field Generated by Nonuniform AC Current Density Using Magnetic Resonance “Design and construction of a research MRI system”
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Radiological Sciences, University of California, Irvine, CA (1997 – 1998)

Awards & Honors

  • 03/1989 – 06/1989 UNESCO Fellowship for graduate research in MRI (competitive), Korean Advanced Institute of Science and Technology
  • 08/1992 – 10/1996 Scholarships , Scientific and Technical Research Council of Turkey
  • 03/1997 – 09/1997 NATO B-1 Fellowship for post-doctoral research in the USA, Awarded by NATO, selected by Scientific and Technical Research Council of Turkey (competitive)
  • 2006 – First place award in Engineering Category (competitive): “Head RF Coil Design with Surface Current Density Optimization for SENSE Imaging”, International Society in Magnetic Resonance in Medicine
  • 05/13/2014 – First place award in musculoskeletal MRI research (competitive), International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine
  • 2015/2016 – Changes in perfusion and duffusion in the endplate regions of degenerating intervertebral discs: a DCE-MRI study (Eur Spine J (2015) 24:2458-2467) has been selected as the best basic science paper in the European Spine Journal in the past year for the GRAMMER European Spine Journal Award 2015/2016.

Current Research

Primary Research Areas

  • Fast imaging techniques using non-Cartesian sampling methods
  • Quantitative MRI to study intervertebral disc degeneration
  • Advanced diffusion MRI techniques applied to concussion and aging studies


Mailing Address

Medical College of Wisconsin
Department of Neurosurgery
8701 Watertown Plank Road
Milwaukee, WI 53226