Changho Choi, Ph.D., received his Bachelor of Science degree in 1987 from Korea University, South Korea. He then earned a Ph.D. from the University of Waterloo, Canada, where he used nuclear magnetic resonance for studying quantum tunneling of protons at low temperatures. Following several years of research in in-vivo MR spectroscopy (MRS), he joined the Advanced Imaging Research Center at UT Southwestern Medical Center in 2007.

Dr. Choi’s research has been focused on both technical and clinical developments of MR spectroscopy in brain tumors and neuropsychiatric disorders. MRS methodology development has been carried out to provide meaningful measurements of clinically-important hard-to-detect brain metabolites, including 2-hydroxyglutarate (2HG), citrate, GABA, glycine, glutamate and glutamine, etc.  Specifically, 2HG, which is a direct consequence of IDH mutation in gliomas, appears to be an unprecedented imaging biomarker in brain tumors.

Research is going on to accomplish a fast, high-precision 2HG imaging modality, in parallel with translation of previously-developed methods into clinics. The clinical utility of 2HG, glycine and citrate in brain tumors is investigated in collaboration with neuro-oncologists. Also, several MRS studies are conducted to evaluate the alterations in metabolic profiles in neurological diseases, including schizophrenia, asthma and autism, in collaboration with psychiatrists.


Korea University (1987), Physics
Graduate School
Korea University (1989), Physics
Graduate School
University of Waterloo (1996), Physics

Research Interest

  • Applications of MRS in cancer and neuropsychiatric diseases
  • In vivo 1H and 13C MR spectroscopy
  • Quantum mechanical simulations of spin dynamics
  • RF pulse and MRS sequence design


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Spectroscopic markers of neurodegeneration in the mesial prefrontal cortex predict survival in ALS.
Hanstock C, Sun K, Choi C, Eurich D, Camicioli R, Johnston W, Kalra S, Amyotroph Lateral Scler Frontotemporal Degener 2020 Feb 1-6
In vivo MRS measurement of 2-hydroxyglutarate in patient-derived IDH-mutant xenograft mouse models versus glioma patients.
Tiwari V, Mashimo T, An Z, Vemireddy V, Piccirillo S, Askari P, Hulsey KM, Zhang S, de Graaf RA, Patel TR, Pan E, Mickey BE, Maher EA, Bachoo RM, Choi C, Magn Reson Med 2020 Jan
Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopic Assessment of IDH Status in gliomas: The New Frontiers of Spectrobiopsy in Neurodiagnostics.
Di Ieva A, Magnussen JS, McIntosh J, Mulcahy MJ, Pardey M, Choi C, World Neurosurg 2019 Sep
A randomized trial of an NMDA receptor antagonist for reversing corticosteroid effects on the human hippocampus.
Brown ES, Kulikova A, Van Enkevort E, Nakamura A, Ivleva EI, Tustison NJ, Roberts J, Yassa MA, Choi C, Frol A, Khan DA, Vazquez M, Holmes T, Malone K, Neuropsychopharmacology 2019 Jun
False-Positive Measurement at 2-Hydroxyglutarate MR Spectroscopy in Isocitrate Dehydrogenase Wild-Type Glioblastoma: A Multifactorial Analysis.
Suh CH, Kim HS, Paik W, Choi C, Ryu KH, Kim D, Woo DC, Park JE, Jung SC, Choi CG, Kim SJ, Radiology 2019 Apr 182200
A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of lamotrigine for prescription corticosteroid effects on the human hippocampus.
Brown ES, Sayed N, Choi C, Tustison N, Roberts J, Yassa MA, Van Enkevort E, Nakamura A, Ivleva EI, Sunderajan P, Khan DA, Vazquez M, McEwen B, Kulikova A, Frol AB, Holmes T Eur Neuropsychopharmacol 2019 Jan