Kira Grogg · this is what i do

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About Me

I am an Instructor/Assistant in Physics with the El Fakhri Lab, part of the newly established Gordon Center for Medical Imaging (formerly the Center for Advanced Medical Imaging Sciences) at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Harvard Medical School (HMS). I am involved in a project for monitoring radiotherapy with positron emission tomography (PET). More info about my research can be found here.

I am also learning html, css, and php after being conscripted to help update my lab's webpage to the 21st century, and have started to extend my knowledge of databases and javascript. You can find links to some of my web projects here.


In 2005 I graduated from Carleton College with a B.A. in Physics and Astronomy. My senior thesis was on the physics of wind turbines. I was lucky to have a wonderful set of professors, not just in physics, but all my courses.

In August 2011 I earned a Ph.D. in Experimental High Energy Particle Physics (HEP) from the University of Wisconsin. During graduate school I worked on the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) experiment at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), colliding protons together at energies of 7 TeV. I spent 3.5 years at CERN in Meyrin, Switzerland conducting particle physics research and helping maintain the CMS experiment. My resulting thesis work was entitled Jets produced in association with W-bosons in CMS at the LHC.

After finishing my dissertation I took a position as a research fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), still playing with protons, but at a much lower energy level (~100 MeV). I am contributing to the development of a novel approach for adaptive Positron Emission Tomography (PET) monitoring of Proton Beam Therapy using endogenously generated positrons. It is important but difficult to verify the delivery of dose for proton therapy, and PET is currently the best option for monitoring dose delivery in vivo. Therapeutic protons create positron-emitting radionuclides that can be imaged with a PET camera. The radionuclides arise as a seconary effect and through different physics mechanisms than the dose and are thus not directly relatable. We are investigating methods for relating the PET images to planned dose and assessing the accuracy of the treatment.


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