Research Areas

Research activities in the group are in the area of near-infrared spectroscopy of tissue for diagnostic, functional, and imaging applications.  Light propagation in tissue is modeled with diffusion theory.

Representative projects in the lab include:

Optical study of muscle hemodynamics and oxygenation
Near-infrared methods can be used to measure the blood flow, oxygen consumption, and oxygen saturation of hemoglobin in skeletal muscle. We use this technique to investigate and model muscle hemodynamic and metabolic responses to exercise and/or vascular occlusion.

Optical mammography
This project aims at developing a novel imaging tool to detect breast cancer by using safe near-infrared light in a non-invasive and painless approach. A novel spectral imaging approach, aimed at quantitative oximetry, has produced optical density images and second-derivative images of a healthy human subject at every 0.5 nm in the wavelength range 650-900 nm.

Optical imaging of the human brain
This project consists of developing a non-invasive optical instrument for functional imaging of the human brain. Optical brain imaging is performed as a stand alone technique or in combination with fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging).

Coherent hemodynamics spectroscopy (CHS)
A brief description of the analytical hemodynamic model that forms the basis for CHS can be found here. A Matlab code that implements the CHS model and plots CHS spectra can be seen here and can be downloaded here. The new CHS technology is aimed at the assessment of cerebral microcirculation. This project involves the optimization of measurement protocols and data processing schemes for CHS, and explores its applications to functional brain imaging and diagnostics or monitoring in clinical settings.