About Us

The Imaging Research Center at the The University of Texas at Austin is an interdisciplinary, multi-methods facility specializing in non-invasive neuroimaging. The core of the center is a new Siemens Skyra 3T MRI scanner used by many researchers for studies of human perception, memory, decision-making, and behavior. Unique emphases at the IRC include a strong connection to supercomputing resources at the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC), real-time fMRI, high-resolution / 3D visual presentation, and support for developmental studies. The facility also contains a number of resources for imaging in model systems, as well as imaging-informed fabrication and machining.

Alex Huk, Ph.D.

Interim Directorhuk-crop

Dr. Huk received his PhD in  psychology from Stanford University, and postdoctoral training in Physiology & Biophysics at the University of Washington in Seattle. He has been a faculty member in the Departments of Neuroscience and Psychology at UT-Austin since 2004.  His research uses a range of neuroimaging and neurophysiological techniques to study the relations between visual processing, decision-making, and motor actions.  He has received a CAREER award from the National Science Foundation and the Elsevier / Vision Sciences Society Young Investigator Award for his research contributions.Office phone: 512-232-5729 E-mail: huk@utexas.edu URL: http://motion.cps.utexas.edu/
Jeffrey Luci, Ph.D.

Jeffrey Luci, Ph.D.

Technical Director

Jeff Luci received his Bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas.  While in graduate school at the University of Iowa, he worked on projects that focused on the development of combination CT and MRI contrast agents. It was during that time that he was introduced to MR physics and imaging.  After completing his Ph.D. in organometallic chemistry, he accepted an NIH postdoctoral fellowship in cancer imaging at Vanderbilt University.  His research included projects in neuroimaging, Dynamic Contrast Enhanced (DCE) MRI, polymer gel dosimetry, relaxation mechanism elucidation, relaxomics, and nuclear magnetic resonance physics.  After accepting a faculty position in the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science, he was responsible for the development of pulse sequences, imaging protocols, and MR hardware and electronics for the Center for Small Animal Imaging.  In April of 2009, he moved to the University of Texas at Austin and the Imaging Research Center.Office phone: 512-471-8505 E-mail: 

Don Nolting, Ph.D.

Facilities Manager

Don Nolting earned his Bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and environmental science from the University of Dubuque (Dubuque, IA). He continued his education at the University of Iowa (Iowa City, IA) where he earned his Ph.D in inorganic and organometallic chemistries. His research focused on early transition metal and lanthanide cluster syntheses and their applications as crystallographic phasing, MRI, and combination CT/ MRI contrast agents. After graduate school, he accepted an NIH postdoctoral fellowship in cancer imaging at Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN) in their Department of Radiology, and he later became an imaging research scientist in the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science. His research involved the synthesis of optical imaging agents to sense pH and the design of macromolecular MR contrast agents for breast cancer imaging. While a member of the institute staff, he also directed a SPECT chemistry lab where he radiolabeled materials to image COX-2, kidney glomerulus, and pancreatic islets. More recently, he held a position as a protocol analyst with the Vanderbilt Center for Neuroscience Drug Discover where he gained expertise with animal research. Don joined the University of Texas at Austin Imaging Research Center in January 2015. Email:
Jeffrey Luci, Ph.D.

J. Neal Rutledge, M.D., FACR

Medical Director

J. Neal Rutledge received his Bachelor’s degree in organic chemistry in 1976 from the University of Oklahoma focusing on NMR in the isolation and synthesis of natural products. He also completed his MD at the University of Oklahoma in 1980 which included a clerkship in metabolic disease at the Imperial College of Medicine in London. He completed his residency in diagnostic radiology at Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City in 1984 and went on to do a fellowship in neuroradiology and neurointerventional surgery at the Neurological Institute of New York, Columbia University, helping develop protocols on the first clinical 1.5T magnet in the United States. While at Columbia he did research on MR imaging of movement disorders. In 1989 he moved to Austin and went into private practice helping develop the first 1.5T medical imaging center in central Texas. Since then as adjunct faculty at UT he has done research with Lee Willerman on MRI imaging and IQ, with Erin Bigler on TBI and Tim Schallert on brain iron, parkinsonism, and stroke. He was one of the initiators of the Imaging Research Center and currently does research on the diagnosis and treatment of acute ischemic stroke.Office phone: 512-926-3876 E-mail:

Grace Shearrer

Imaging Research Tech

Grace Shearrer earned her bachelor’s degree in Nutritional Science and Physiology at the University of Wyoming. At Wyoming Grace’s research focused on body fat imaging using Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry in a rat model. In 2012, Grace joined the University of Texas Nutritional Science program as a PhD candidate in the Davis lab. Her research examines the effect of sugar-sweetened beverage on reward pathways in children using fMRI. Grace joined the IRC in 2014.


Chad Cumba

Software Engineer

Chad manages the XNAT instance and data flow from the scanner to TACC. Contact for help with data availability, processing, and analysis issues. E-mail: chad.cumba@mail.utexas.edu

Affiliated Researchers

  • ..WebsiteJennifer S. Beer, Ph.D. Associate Professor Department of Psychology Institute of Neuroscience
  • Email..Christopher Beevers, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Psychology
  • EmailFaculty Profile.James Booth, Ph.D. Professor and Chair Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders
  • EmailFaculty ProfileWebsiteBharath Chandrasekaran, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders
  • EmailFaculty Profile.Jessica Church, Ph.D. Assistant ProfessorDepartment of Psychology
  • Email.WebsiteLawrence K. Cormack, Ph.D. Professor Department of Psychology
  • EmailFaculty Profile.Jaimie Davis, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Nutritional Sciences
  • EmailFaculty Profile.Stanislav Emelianov, Ph.D. Professor Department of Biomedical Engineering
  • ..WebsiteAndreana Haley, Ph.D. Associate Professor Department of Psychology
  • EmailFaculty ProfileWebsiteMaya L. Henry, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Communication
  • ..WebsiteAlex Huk, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Neuroscience Department of Psychology
  • EmailFaculty ProfileWebsiteJarrod Lewis-Peacock, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Psychology
  • EmailFaculty Profile.Jeffrey Luci, Ph.D. Research Assistant Professor Department of Neuroscience
  • Email..Jeanette A. Mumford, Ph.D. Research Assistant Professor Department of Psychology
  • EmailFaculty ProfileWebsiteRussell A. Poldrack, Ph.D. Professor Department of Psychology Department of Neuroscience
  • Email.WebsiteAlison Preston, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Psychology Department of Neuroscience
  • ..WebsiteDavid Schnyer, Ph.D. Professor Department of Psychology
  • ..WebsiteJames Sulzer, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Mechanical Engineering