Professor Mark Anastasio elevated to IEEE Fellow

1/9/2024 Bethan Owen

Bioengineering department head Mark Anastasio has been named an IEEE Fellow for his impactful contributions to the field of computational imaging. 

Written by Bethan Owen

Bioengineering department head Mark Anastasio has been elevated to IEEE Fellow for his impactful contributions to the field of computational imaging. This prestigious honor is a testament to Anastasio’s dedication and groundbreaking work in medical imaging technologies.

Becoming an IEEE Fellow is a significant achievement in the realm of engineering and technology, as it demonstrates not only technical expertise and dedication but also a profound impact on the field. IEEE is "the world’s largest technical professional organization dedicated to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity," and forms an international cohort of engineers and scientists who are leaders in their field and committed to interdisciplinary human development. Less than 0.1% of IEEE voting members are selected annually for the elevation to IEEE Fellow.

“It means a lot to me,” said Anastasio. “IEEE is one of the largest and most influential professional societies in the world. I've known about IEEE since I was 18 years old, and back then I never imagined that I would be able to become an IEEE fellow one day. It’s very fulfilling.”

While Professor Anastasio’s work has had an extensive interdisciplinary influence, his elevation to IEEE Fellow was specifically awarded for his work with two medical imaging methods: photoacoustic computed tomography (PACT) and x-ray phase-contrast imaging and tomography (XPC). 

Photoacoustic computed tomography is a rapidly developing imaging modality that combines the benefits of optical and ultrasound imaging, and Anastasio is an internationally recognized authority on the subject. His work in this area has advanced the image reconstruction methods in PACT by using innovative inversion methods that can compensate for physical factors and/or overcome incomplete data, increasing the effectiveness of this imaging method.

“PACT is an emerging imaging technology that we've been working on for close to 20 years,” said Anastasio. “We are one of the leading groups developing computational methods for forming the images in this new technique. We have a long track record of innovation in developing computational methods for image reconstruction for that modality.”

Anastasio has also made significant strides in XPC imaging, a method that exploits image contrast based on an object’s refractive properties. Within XPC, he has contributed to fundamental topics in phase retrieval, has pioneered the application of signal detection theory to assess image quality, and has advanced image reconstruction. 

Throughout his career and across different imaging techniques, image reconstruction has been a key element of Anastasio’s work.

“Image reconstruction refers to the process of taking a collection of data recorded by an imaging system and using an algorithm to transform it into an image,” said Anastasio. “Almost all modern medical imaging technologies are computed in nature and require an image reconstruction method to form an image.”

The development of advanced image reconstruction methods can result in reduced data-acquisition times and/or improved image quality, which can improve health outcomes for patients who require medical imaging procedures.  Elevation to the rank of IEEE Fellow is proof of his commitment to pushing the boundaries of what is possible in this field. 


Dr. Mark Anastasio is the Donald Biggar Willett Professor in Engineering and the head of the department of bioengineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where his research interests broadly address the computational aspects of image formation, modern imaging science, and applied machine learning. With this new fellowship, Professor Anastasio joins the ranks of bioengineering faculty members and IEEE Fellows Professors Rashid Bahir, Stephen Boppart, and Mike Insana. 

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This story was published January 9, 2024.