We are extremely saddened by the passing of Professor Juergen Karl Willmann (Figure 1). Professor Willmann died in a car accident on Jan 8 this year at the rather young age of 45 years old. Dr. Juergen Karl Willmann served as an associate editor of our journal shortly after this journal was founded in late 2011 and made significant contributions to the development of this journal. His passing is a tremendous loss to everyone.
Dr. Juergen Karl Willmann was superb clinician and brilliant scientist. Dr Willmann was a Professor of Radiology and Chief of Body Imaging at Stanford University School of Medicine and Vice chair for strategy, outreach and clinical trials. Dr. Willmann was an elected fellow of the Society of Abdominal Radiology and of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. Before his career at Stanford, Dr. Willmann was educated in Germany and Switzerland. He attended Albert Ludwig University of Freiburg in Germany and completed his medical internship at the University Medical Center Freiburg and his residency at University Hospital Zurich in Switzerland. Dr. Willmann is described by his colleagues as “exceptionally intelligent, highly driven, supremely organized and a wonderful leader, mentor, father and husband.”
Dr. Willmann and his lab worked on targeted contrast microbubbles for early detection of tumors and to direct drugs for treatment. His team was the first to use the microbubble technology in human clinical imaging trials, leveraging them to identify ovarian cancer and breast cancer. Dr. Willmann’s investigation into cancer detection and imaging technologies earned him the 2017 Distinguished Investigator Award from the Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research.
Dr. Willmann is survived by his wife Amelie Lutz, and their two children, Alexander and Juliana Willmann; his parents, Elisabeth and Karl Willmann; and sister Sabine Willmann.