Paul E. Kinahan, PhD

Vice Chair for Research and Professor of Radiology
Adjunct Professor of Bioengineering and Physics
Head of the Imaging Research Laboratory
Director of PET/CT Physics, UW Medical Center
University of Washington

Office: Suite 222
Portage Bay Building (PBB)

Mail address:
Box 357987, University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-7987 USA

Phone: 206-543-0236
Fax: 206-543-8356


Graduate Student Program in Biomedical Imaging

BioE 599: X-ray and Nuclear Biomedical Imaging

Imaging Detectors for Medical and Health Sciences


Paul Kinahan received BASc and MASc degrees in Engineering Physics from the University of British Columbia, and his PhD in Bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 1994. From there he became an Assistant Professor of Radiology at the University of Pittsburgh where he was a member of the team that developed the first PET/CT scanner. In 2001 he moved to the University of Washington. He has served in several capacities for the IEEE, SNM, RSNA, and AAPM. He has served as the chair of the SNM Computer and Instrumentation Council, the American Board of Science in Nuclear Medicine, and the Executive Committee of the Quantitative Imaging Network. He is currently a member of the Science Council of the AAPM, co-chair of the RSNA Quantitative Imaging Biomarkers Alliance (QIBA) Nuclear Medicine Modality group, and co-Director of the ACRIN PET/CT core laboratory. In 2012 he co-founded PET/X LLC, a startup company with the goal of accelerating the developent of imaging systems that guide the best selection of cancer therapy.



from Google Scholar (most recent first)


My research is focused on medical imaging using positron emission tomography (PET). PET imaging is used in the clinic for patient healthcare and for basic research in areas of neuroscience, oncology, and cardiology. Trying to improve the technology of PET imaging has generated some fascinating and important questions and problems. Our projects include:

  • Developing and improving dual-mode PET/CT scanners for oncology imaging
  • Image reconstruction algorithms
  • Quantative imaging for treatment planning and assesing response to cancer therapy
  • Describing and improving medical image quality.

Several of our developments are now included in commercial imaging systems and many research systems worldwide. We collaborate closely with industry, physicians, and other researchers on the design of acquisition and processing methods for PET experiments.

Initiatives / Collaborations

Image Wisely: A campaign to lower the amount of radiation used in medically necessary imaging studies and eliminating unnecessary procedures.

Quantitative Imaging Biomarkers Alliance: An initiative to advance quantitative medical imaging and the use of imaging biomarkers in clinical trials and clinical practice by engaging researchers, healthcare professionals and industry.

American College of Radiology Imaging Network: An organization with interests in diagnostic imaging and image-guided treatment dedicated to organizing and conducting clinical trials and other studies to improve patient care.

Quantitative Imaging Network: A network to promote research and development of quantitative imaging methods for the measurement of tumor response to therapies in clinical trial settings, with the overall goal of developing more effective cancer therapies and facilitating clinical decision making. This includes the PET/CT demonstration project.