College of Education and Human Development

Department of Educational Psychology

Frances Lawrenz, along with other UMN faculty, co-authors landmark ethical guidance for new portable MRI brain research

Mobile brain scanner research image

Frances Lawrenz, PhD and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Educational Psychology, has co-authored, along with other University of Minnesota faculty, a new landmark publication titled "Ethical, legal, and policy challenges in field-based neuroimaging research using emerging portable MRI technologies: guidance for investigators and for oversight."

This journal article offers 15 concrete recommendations for addressing the ethical and legal issues raised by the use of new highly portable magnetic resonance imaging (pMRI) scanners in neuroscience research. Instead of needing research participants to travel to an MRI scanner, the pMRI allows scanners to travel to participants.

The authors urge close consultation with participant communities and careful attention to oversight of research by new investigators deploying this more accessible technology. Development of the report was funded by a $1.6 million 4-year grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) BRAIN Initiative.