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The following are examples of previous research activities and PhD thesis projects.

Anti-microbial PDT

Anti-microbial PDT

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Fluorescence Anisotropy

Fluorescence AnisotropyWe are interested in applications of confocal fluorescence polarization microscopy to problems in cancer research. The technique is based on measuring the steady state polarization of sample fluorescence imaged in a confocal arrangement. A linearly polarized laser excitation source preferentially excites fluorescent target molecules with transition moments aligned parallel ot the incident polarization vector.

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In Vivo Optical Imaging

In Vivo Optical ImagingIn our lab, we have examined the PDT-stress-mediated HSP70 activation and its relation to cellular toxicity in a mouse tumor cell line, which was transfected with a plasmid consisting of a fluorescent reporter gene (GFP) under the control of an hsp70 promoter. This has allowed us to study the PDT-mediated inducible expression of HSP70 in living specimens in vitro and in vivo using fluorescence imaging.

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Modeling of PDT Dosimetry

Modeling of PDT Dosimetry

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Preclinical Evaluation of PDT

Preclinical Evaluation of PDT

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Tissue Spectroscopy

Tissue SpectroscopyReflectance spectroscopy reports the absorption and scattering properties of tissue. Various strategies for separating the contributions of absorption and scattering in attenuation measurements have been proposed and evaluated. We have adopted broad band steady state methods that are based on either diffusion or P3 approximations to radiative transfer. Because of our interest in cancer and in photodynamic therapy in particular, we have been especially interested in monitoring hemoglobin oxygen saturation using reflectance techniques.

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Student Opportunities and Current Research Activities

University of Rochester undergraduate students continue to explore independent study and research opportunities in photodynamic therapy and medical image processing with Dr. Tim Baran.

Although Professor Foster is no longer accepting new PhD students, these are ongoing, currently funded research collaborations –

PDT: Mechanisms and strategies for optimization.  NIH/NCI P01 CA55791, S.O. Gollnick, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, PI.

Mitochondrial ROS microdomains and neuronal ischemia.  NIH/NINDS R01 NS092558, A.P. Wojtovich, PI.

Synthetic biomarkers of RNA modulation therapies, NIH/NINDS R01 NS088202, T.M. Wheeler, Massachusetts General Hospital, PI.