Medical Physics Department
School of Nuclear and Allied Sciences
University of Ghana
Dr. Francis Hasford is a Senior Research Scientist with the Radiological and Medical Sciences Research Institute of Ghana Atomic Energy Commission and also serves as Lecturer and Head of the Medical Physics Department of the School of Nuclear and Allied Sciences, University of Ghana. Dr. Hasford obtained his Masters and PhD degrees in Medical Physics from the University of Ghana in 2006 and 2015 respectively. His PhD thesis titled “Ultrasound and PET-CT Image Fusion for Prostate Brachytherapy Image Guidance,” was undertaken through IAEA sandwich fellowship programme between the University of Ghana and the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa). This research was performed under supervision of Prof. John Amuasi, Prof. Kwame Kyere and Prof. Mboyo Di-Tamba Vangu. Outcome of his study has been presented at national and international conferences and was adjudged best poster presentation the Maiden University of Ghana Doctoral Conference. His research interest covers medical imaging in support of radiation therapy. Dr. Hasford is the Deputy General Secretary of Ghana Society for Medical Physics, Chairman for the Education and Training Committee of the Federation of African Medical Physics Organizations (FAMPO), and Ghana’s Coordinator for the IAEA Technical Cooperation Project RAF 6044 (Medical Physics in Support of Cancer Management). In 2016, he served as visiting lecturer on behalf of the IAEA for the Medical Physics Masters Programme at the National University of Science and Technology, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
Guerda Massillon-JL, PhD
Instituto de Física,
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, México
Dr Guerda Massillon was born in Bassin-Bleu, a little town situated at the Northwest of Haiti, and moved to Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti to obtain a BSc in Physics from the Universite d’Etat d’Haiti in July 1996. She moved to Mexico City in 1998 where she earned an MSc in Medical Physics and a PhD from the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM).
In February 2007 she was appointed by the Institute of Physics, UNAM as a Research Associate to work on dosimetric properties of materials exposed to high-ionization density radiation fields. Simultaneously, she granted permission to undertake 2 years post-doc at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Gaithersburg, MD USA where she led part of the research project: “Absorbed dose measurement for low-energy photon brachytherapy Sources” collaborating with Drs. Christopher G Soares, Michael G Mitch and Ronaldo Minniti. After her return to UNAM in 2010, she was promoted as Assistant Professor. Since then, she has been concentrating on two research projects:
1) “Response of dosimetric materials exposed to low-energy photons”;
2) “Reference dosimetry for small radiotherapy fields”.
Since 2009, Guerda Massillon is lecturing in the Post-Graduate Program in Physical Sciences (PCF), UNAM, and has supervised several postgraduate students in Medical Physics. She was invited as Visiting Professor at NIST, USA and at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada collaborating with Prof. David W O Rogers on Monte Carlo Applications to radiation dosimetry. Guerda Massillon has published 20 peer reviewed papers and is a regular reviewer for many journals including Phys. Med. Biol and PLoS ONE.
In 2011, Guerda Massillon has been awarded as a Fellow of the InterAmerican Network of Academies of Sciences (IANAS) for her research and scholarly competence as well as her potential for helping to strengthen science and technology capacity in the Americas and cooperation between researchers and institutions in her field of study. In Mexico, she has been recognised as National Researcher Level II from the Mexican National System of Researchers (SNI) in January 2014.
Jan-Bernd Hövener, PhD
Head of Hyperpolarization Research Freiburg,
University Medical Center Freiburg, Germany
Dr. Jan-Bernd Hövener was born in Münster (Westfalen), Germany, and studied Physics and Business Informatics at the “Westfälische Willhlems Universität” in Münster. After receiving his Vordiplom (intermediate diploma) in 2001, he moved on to the University of Heidelberg. He spend two semesters abroad in France at the “Université Nice Sophia Antipolis”, where he took part in the “Maîtrise Physique” and “DESS biomedical”, including subjects on fluid dynamics and statistical physics.
After returning to Heidelberg, he finished the final exams and carried out his diploma thesis with Prof. Bachert at German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) entitled “Development of a technique to determine non-invasively the total content of N-Acetly-L-Aspartate in the human brain in vivo”. This work was the starting point for a joint research project with Prof. Gass (Mannheim) and Prof. Gonen (New York). In the course of this project, Dr. Hövener spend several month followed by multiple visits as a visiting scientist in the lab of Prof. Gonen at New York University (NYU).
For his PhD, Dr. Hövener decided to join the hyperpolarization research group at the California Institute of Technology (CalTech, Prof. Weitekamp), and the Huntington Medical Research Institutes (HMRI, Profs. Bhattacharya and Ross), both in Pasadena, USA, for two years. Upon his return to Germany, he defended his thesis after total time of two years and seven month with the mark “magna cum laude” (very good) at the University of Heidelberg, Faculty of Physics and Astronomy.
During this time, he contributed essentially to the development and application of parahydrogen-based hyperpolarization of biomolecules, which is reflected by several manuscripts, conference contributions and awards.
Building on the existing contacts, Dr. Hövener was invited by Prof. Hennig in 2009 to implement an entirely new hyperpolarization program in Freiburg. In the same year, the concept of this endeavour was voted “best talk” at the Annual Meeting of the Int. Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM), German Chapter, in Basel, Switzerland.
In 2010, Dr. Hövener was admitted to the Academy of Excellence of the German Science Foundation (DFG). Supported by this award, Dr. Hövener was able to expand his group and to date has supervised more than ten students, is teaching in Freiburg and has published more than 15 papers and numerous peer-reviewed or invited conference contributions. His standing in the scientific community is reflected by his election to the board of the ISMRM German Chapter and his function as reviewer for scientific journals and funding agencies (including e.g. Angewandte Chemie int. ed., e.g.).
The preliminary peak of work is represented by the discovery of the effect of continuous hyperpolarization, which was subject of several press releases and found a broad echo in the national news media. His future potential and past accomplishments were recognized by the admission to the Emmy-Noether Program (ENP) of the DFG. The ENP is awarded to internationally experienced scientists in order to accelerate the academic carrier towards scientific independence (> 1,000,000 €).
In his leisure time, Dr. Hövener teaches sailboat racing to children, organizes sailing camps and, time permitting, competes himself. He enjoys all sorts of water sports, mountain biking, running before or after work and swimming in the next lake.