Blinking Tumors – and Other New Ways to Molecularly Image and Treat Cancer

Stephen A. Boppart, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Bioengineering, and Medicine, Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Friday, April 16, 2010

Spanos Auditorium

This seminar is part of the Jones Seminars on Science, Technology, and Society series

The diagnostic, interrogational, and therapeutic potential of molecular agents or probes is being investigated and exploited across virtually every modality in biomedical imaging. Many types of probes enhance contrast or deliver therapy by localizing to and statically residing at targeted sites. However, it is possible to utilize dynamic molecular probes that can either be turned on or off by some optical, chemical, or genetic trigger, or physically modulated by external forces. This seminar will explore new ideas and methods to optically image and treat cancer, including the use of magnetomotive molecular probes that dynamically respond to applied magnetic fields and cause tumors to "blink," targeted microsphere agents that can deliver drugs to specific sites in the body, optical probes that do not fluorescence but rather scatter and absorb light, and nonlinear optical techniques that can generate images of cancer based on the endogenous molecules. Together, our ability in the future to find, analyze, and eradicate tumors may be more successful.

About the Speaker

Steven Boppart is Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Bioengineering, and Medicine at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is Head of the Biophotonics Imaging Laboratory at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, and is interested in developing and translating novel optical biomedical imaging technologies for clinical use. He received his PhD in Medical and Electrical Engineering from MIT and his MD from Harvard Medical School, followed by an internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Illinois. Currently he is leading a campus-wide Strategic Initiative on Imaging to organize a community of over 150 faculty with interests in the science, technology, and application of imaging and visualization across all fields.