Lauterbur, Paul Christian, 1929–2007, American chemist, b. Sidney, Ohio, Ph.D. Univ. of Pittsburgh, 1962. Lauterbur was (1969–85) a faculty member at the State Univ. of New York at Stony Brook (now Stony Brook Univ.) and at the Univ. of Illinois from (1985–2007). He was co-recipient, with Sir Peter Mansfield, of the 2003 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for discoveries concerning magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Lauterbur discovered that a two-dimensional picture could be created via the introduction of gradients in the magnetic field; his work laid the foundation for the routine use of MRI as a tool in the diagnosis of medical conditions.
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