Walter Kucharczyk was born, raised and educated in Toronto. He graduated from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine in 1979, after which he undertook specialty training in Radiology in Toronto, followed by subspecialty training in Neuroradiology and Magnetic Resonance Imaging at the University of California, San Francisco from 1984 to 1986. He returned to a faculty position at the University of Toronto in 1986, and became the inaugural Director of Magnetic Resonance Imaging at what was then the Toronto General Hospital. He has remained Director of MRI ever since. At the University, he became Professor and Chair of the Department of Medical Imaging in 1991, a position he still holds today. He is Past-President of the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM), the largest research and education group in the world (5000 members) devoted to developing and teaching magnetic resonance to doctors and scientists. He has been awarded several grants from Technology Ontario (the predecessor of ORDCF), the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, the Ontario Research and Development Challenge Fund (CFI), and most recently, the Leading Edge Fund of CFI.
- 1991-1993, Career Clinical Scientist Award
- 1989, Gabriel H. Wilson Award
- 1975, John Melady Award
During the past 10 years, Kucharczyk’s research has focused on developing and applying modern high-speed 3D imaging technologies for non-invasive and minimally invasive treatment. He co-led the team of researchers that did the first MRI guided brain tumor surgery in Canada, the first image guided microwave ablation of prostate cancer in the world, and the first transcutateous MRI-guided Focused Ultrasound treatment of bone metastases in North America. His other past research interests include: Design and implementation of a novel fast scan key-hole of MRI scanning for the MRI detection of pituitary pathology. Characterization of a wide variety of abnormal human pathologic tissues, including proteinaceous fluids, blood, phospholipids vesicles, iron, and ferrtin, that laid the foundation of establishing “MRI signatures” for pathologic tissues, and for future work on characterizing heat ablated tissues.
- Tranexamic acid and early saphenous vein graft patency in conventional coronary artery bypass graft surgery: A prospective randomized controlled clinical trial. The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 130 (2), 2005, 309-314.
- Interstitial Doppler optical coherence tomography. Optics Letters 30 (14), 2005, 1791.
- Primary white matter involvement in sporadic-type Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease? Which came first, the chicken or the egg? American Journal of Neuroradiology, 2004.
- MR diffusion-weighted imaging in a case of West Nile virus encephalitis. Neurology 61 (12), 2003, 1821-1823.
- Neuroradiologic screening in normal-pressure glaucoma: study results and literature review. Ahmed IIK, Feldman F, Kucharczyk W, Trope GE.**Dr. Graham Trope, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Toronto, The Toronto Hospital (Western Division), East Wing, 6th Floor, Room 508, 399 Bathhurst Street, Ontario M5T 2S8, Canada J Glaucoma 2002;11:279–286. American Journal of Ophthalmology 135 (2), 2003, 265.
- Neuroradiologic screening in normal-pressure glaucoma: study results and literature review. Ahmed IIK, Feldman F, Kucharczyk W, American Journal of Ophthalmology 135 (2), 2003, 265.
- Magnetic resonance thermometry for predicting thermal damage: An application of interstitial laser coagulation in an in vivo canine prostate model. Magnetic Resonance in Medicine 44 (6), 2000, 873-883.
- Granulomatous hypophysitis due to Wegener's granulomatosis. American Journal of Neuroradiology, 2000.