Biomedical Optics


Optics is a branch of physics that examines the behavior and properties of light and the interaction of light with matter. Photonics is the science and technology of generating, controlling, and detecting photons, which are particles of light. The biophotonics lab conducts optics research with an emphasis on light propagation in biotissues.

The biophotonics resource center provides novel optical technologies for medical research and therapeutic and diagnostic tools for clinical medicine.

We research novel optical solutions to problems in basic science and clinical medicine.

Research Projects
Spectral Camera imaging
Optical fiber spectroscopy
Vibration measurements using interferometry
Confocal reflectance/fluorescence microscopy
Propagation of partially coherent fields

Xiaolin Nan

Xiaolin Nan Lab


  • Confocal laser scanning microscope (CLSM), using both fluorescence and reflectance with 2-photon capability, for use with cells, small animals, and topical human skin sites
  • Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), also for use with cells, small animals, and topical human skin sites
  • Optical Micro AngioGraphy (OMAG) (3D imaging of blood flow in microcirculation)
  • Polarized light camera (polCAM) for imaging superficial tissues over several cm2 field based on scattering by tissue structure
  • Spectral camera (spectCAM) for imaging with spectroscopic contrast (blood, oxygen saturation, melanin, light scattering by tissue ultrastructure).
  • Optical Spectroscopy via optical fibers (topical, via needles, via catheters)
  • PhotoDynamic Therapy (PDT) (targeted oxidative injury)
  • Biomechanical testing