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Nikola Stikov
B.S., M.S., Ph.D., Université Stanford

Phone: (514) 340-4711 Ext. 4549 Room: L-5608

Research interests and affiliations

Research interests
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
  • In vivo histology
  • Biophysical modeling
  • Brain and heart microstructure
  • Multiple sclerosis

Our team has access to world-class imaging facilities at the University of Montreal, and we also work closely with collaborators at the Montreal Neurological Institute and the newly established Stanford Center for Cognitive and Neurobiological Imaging. Due to the interdisciplinary and international nature of our projects, we are open to students from a wide range of scientific backgrounds.

If you are interested in joining, please send e-mail with your CV to:

Below is a list of ongoing projects:

  • Characterizing the myelin microstructure in patients with multiple sclerosis (collaboration with the Montreal Neurological Institute)
  • Building software for simulating and fitting magnetic resonance data to tissue models (collaboration with the Stanford Center for Cognitive and Neurobiological Imaging)
  • Studying the sexual dimorphism in the myelin thickness (g-ratio) during normal brain development
  • Histological validation of the accuracy and precision of myelin imaging techniques
  • Pulse sequence development for magnetic resonance spectroscopy and diffusion in the heart and the brain


Recent publications
Journal article
De Tillieux, P., Topfer, R., Foias, A., Leroux, I., El Maachi, I., Leblond, H., Stikov, N. & Cohen-Adad, J. (2018). A pneumatic phantom for mimicking respiration-induced artifacts in spinal MRI. Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 79(1), 600-605. Retrieved from
Journal article
Boudreau, M., Stikov, N. & Pike, G.B. (2018). B-1-sensitivity analysis of quantitative magnetization transfer imaging. Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, 79(1), 276-285. Retrieved from
Journal article
Mangeat, G., Badji, A., Ouellette, R., Treaba, C.A., Herranz, E., Granberg, T., Louapre, C., Stikov, N., Sloane, J.A., Bellec, P., Mainero, C. & Cohen-Adad, J. (2018). Changes in structural network are associated with cortical demyelination in early multiple sclerosis. Human Brain Mapping, 39(5), 2133-2146. Retrieved from
Journal article
Lopez Rios, N., Pouliot, P., Papoutsis, K., Foias, A., Stikov, N., Lesage, F., Dehaes, M. & Cohen-Adad, J. (2018). Design and construction of an optimized transmit/receive hybrid birdcage resonator to improve full body images of medium-sized animals in 7T scanner. PLoS One, 13(2), 14 pages. Retrieved from


Co-director, Neuroimaging Research Laboratory (NeuroPoly)

Researcher at Montreal Heart Institute


Dr. Nikola Stikov is assistant professor of Biomedical Engineering, a researcher at the Montreal Heart Institute, and co-director of NeuroPoly, the Neuroimaging Research Laboratory at École Polytechnique. His research spans the gamut of quantitative magnetic resonance imaging, from basic issues of standardization and accuracy, to biophysical modeling, microstructural imaging and clinical applications. His group is particularly interested in developing and validating novel biomarkers for non-invasive characterization of the brain and heart microstructure during development, disease and treatment, thus pushing the boundaries of the emerging field of in vivo histology.

Prior to joining the Polytechnique faculty, Dr. Stikov completed his postdoctoral training with Dr. Bruce Pike at the Montreal Neurological Institute, and his Ph.D. degree with Dr. John Pauly and Dr. Dwight Nishimura at Stanford University. For his accomplishments, Dr. Stikov has been awarded the Stanford Electrical Engineering Outstanding Service Award in 2003, and the Stanford University Centennial Teaching Assistant Award in 2007. He is also the founder of, and has organized several international conferences for magnetic resonance imaging under the auspices of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM). In 2014, Dr. Stikov was elected Junior Fellow of the ISMRM.



  • Junior Fellow of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (2014) 
  • Montreal Neurological Institute CECR Fellowship (2010)
  • Stanford Centennial Teaching Assistant Award (2007)
  • Stanford Electrical Engineering Outstanding Service Award (2003) 


GBM2330 Principles of biomedical instrumentation

 ELE6812 Image processing and analysis

Supervision at Polytechnique


  • Master's Thesis (2)

    • Saliani, A. (2017). Construction d'un atlas de la microstructure de la matière blanche de la moelle épinière chez le rat à partir d'acquisitions histologiques (Master's Thesis, École Polytechnique de Montréal). Retrieved from
    • Vuong, M.T. (2017). Comparison of Myelin Imaging Techniques in Ex Vivo Spinal Cord (Master's Thesis, École Polytechnique de Montréal). Retrieved from