We study the interaction of light with living biological cells and tissues, and endeavor to apply that knowledge to create novel techniques and medical devices to understand, diagnose, and treat human disease. We mainly develop approaches to characterize deep tissue (i.e., several centimeters), which is a subfield within biophotonics referred to as diffuse optics or tissue optics. Specifically, we are creating novel techniques to perform noninvasive and minimally invasive quantitative measurements of tissue composition, architecture and metabolic function.

Illustrated below, most of our research entails using “electrical engineering” knowledge and discoveries at the forefront of electronics and optical devices (e.g., semiconductors, lasers, detectors, microfabrication, circuits, signal processing and computation) to develop completely new and dramatically improved biomedical instrumentation. Concurrently, we study how to use these technologies to solve significant problems in medical science, commonly performing both preclinical (animal models) and clinical (human) studies. 

For more information, browse our latest publications!

O’sullivan group research overview