Soonmee Cha MD


Associate Professor of Radiology and Neurological Surgery

Principal Investigator, Brain Tumor Research Center

Dr. Cha's research focus is on improving neuroradiologic diagnosis of brain tumors and developing new imaging techniques that can serve as surrogate markers of tumor biology, response to therapy, and prognosis. Her particular interests are in perfusion magnetic resonance imaging (pMRI). Recent advances in neuroimaging permit acquisition of physiological maps that complement anatomical information provided by traditional techniques. Ultrafast MRI methods provide high spatial-resolution images of the self-diffusion of water, axonal organization, and blood oxygenation. Maps of cerebral microcirculation and quantitative assessments of capillary blood volume, reflective of tumor angiogenesis and alterations in the blood-brain barrier, which can be constructed from dynamic contrast-enhanced pMRI, are particularly useful in evaluating brain tumors.

Education, Training, and Previous Positions

1987: BS, Georgetown University
1991: MD, Georgetown University School of Medicine
1991-1992: Internship, Georgetown University; Transitional Residency, Fairfax Hospital, Falls Church, VA
1992-1996: Residency in Diagnostic Radiology, North Shore University Hospital, Cornell University Medical College, Manhasset, NY
1996-1998: Fellowship in Neuroradiology, NYU Medical Center, New York, NY
1997-1998: Clinical Instructor of Neuroradiology, New York University (NYU) Medical Center, New York, NY
1998-1999: Assistant Professor of Clinical Radiology, NYU School of Medicine
1999-2001: Assistant Professor of Radiology, NYU School of Medicine

Selected Professional Memberships and Appointments

American College of Radiology
Radiological Society of North America
American Society of Neuroradiology

Selected Recent Publications

Lim DA, Cha S, Mayo MC, Chen MH, Keles E, VandenBerg S, Berger MS. Relationship of glioblastoma multiforme to neural stem cell regions predicts invasive and multifocal tumor phenotype. Neuro Oncol 2007;9(4):424-429.
Lupo JM, Cha S, Chang SM, Nelson SJ. Analysis of metabolic indices in regions of abnormal perfusion in patients with high-grade glioma. AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2007;28(8):1455-1461.
Osorio JA, Ozturk-Isik E, Xu D, Cha S, Chang S, Berger MS, Vigneron DB, Nelson SJ. 3D 1H MRSI of brain tumors at 3.0 Tesla using an eight-channel phased-array head coil. J Magn Reson Imaging 2007;26(1):23-30.
Cha S, Lupo JM, Chen MH, Lamborn KR, McDermott MW, Berger MS, Nelson SJ, Dillon WP. Differentiation of Glioblastoma Multiforme and Single Brain Metastasis by Peak Height and Percentage of Signal Intensity Recovery Derived from Dynamic Susceptibility-Weighted Contrast-Enhanced Perfusion MR Imaging. AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2007;28(6):1078-1084.
Ware ML, Hirose Y, Scheithauer BW, Yeh RF, Mayo MC, Smith JS, Chang S, Cha S, Tihan T, Feuerstein BG. Genetic aberrations in gliomatosis cerebri. Neurosurgery 2007;60(1):150-158.
Cha S. CNS tumors: monitoring therapeutic response and outcome prediction [Review]. Top Magn Reson Imaging 2006;17(2):63-68.
Li Y, Osorio JA, Ozturk-Isik E, Chen AP, Xu D, Crane JC, Cha S, Chang S, Berger MS, Vigneron DB, Nelson SJ. Considerations in applying 3D PRESS H-1 brain MRSI with an eight-channel phased-array coil at 3 T. Magn Reson Imaging 2006;24(10):1295-1302.
Lupo JM, Lee MC, Han ET, Cha S, Chang SM, Berger MS, Nelson SJ. Feasibility of dynamic susceptibility contrast perfusion MR imaging at 3T using a standard quadrature head coil and eight-channel phased-array coil with and without SENSE reconstruction. J Magn Reson Imaging 2006;24(3):520-529.
Smith JS, Quinones-Hinojosa A, Phillips JJ, Bollen AW, McDermott MW, Cha S. Limitations of diffusion-weighted imaging in distinguishing between a brain tumor and a central nervous system histoplasmoma. J Neurooncol 2006;79(2):217-218.
Cianfoni A, Cha S, Bradley WG, Dillon WP, Wintermark M. Quantitative measurement of blood-brain barrier permeability using perfusion-CT in extra-axial brain tumors. J Neuroradiol 2006;33(3):164-168.
Smith JS, Lin H, Mayo MC, Bannerjee A, Gupta N, Perry V, Cha S. Diffusion-weighted MR imaging abnormalities in pediatric patients with surgically-treated intracranial mass lesions. J Neurooncol 2006;79(2):203-209.
Ozturk-Isik E, Crane JC, Cha S, Chang SM, Berger MS, Nelson SJ. Unaliasing lipid contamination for MR spectroscopic imaging of gliomas at 3T using sensitivity encoding (SENSE). Magn Reson Med 2006;55(5):1164-1169.
Lee MC, Cha S, Chang SM, Nelson SJ. Partial-volume model for determining white matter and gray matter cerebral blood volume for analysis of gliomas. J Magn Reson Imaging 2006;23(3):257-266.
Sanchez-Mejia RO, Pham DN, Prados M, Tihan T, Cha S, El-Sayed I, McDermott MW. Management of a sporadic malignant subfrontal peripheral nerve sheath tumor. J Neurooncol 2006;76(2):165-169.
Smith JS, Cha S, Mayo MC, McDermott MW, Parsa AT, Chang SM, Dillon WP, Berger MS. Serial diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging in cases of glioma: distinguishing tumor recurrence from postresection injury. J Neurosurg 2005;103(3):428-438.