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Photothermal Techniques for Materials Characterization and Monitoring of human Red Blood Cells

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Seminar Details
Presenter Name: 
Prof. George Chen, Associate Professor of School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Date: 
Tuesday, March 30, 2010 - 2:00pm
Location: 
CHBE 202
Seminar Abstract: 

In the 70s photothermal techniques were developed to characterize materials’ properties. In recent years, photothermal techniques have been modified for studying live cells. In this talk, pulsed photothermal reflectance (PPR) will first be introduced that can characterize thermal properties of thin films and carbon nanotubes. Using PPR, thermal conductivity of 20nm thin film and thermal boundary resistance at the interfaces can be determined. Then, photothermal response (PTR) will be introduced that can determine the thermal property of live cells under normal aqueous environment. PTR was applied for monitoring the programmed cell death (eryptosis) of human Red Blood Cells. It is found that the thermal diffusivity of RBC increases by 2 folds before the dying cell proceeds into the non-linear regime. Moreover, the statistical result infers the detection of an initial stage of eryptosis before PS externalization that flow cytometry couldn’t detect.

Presenter Biography: 

Dr George Chen received his BS and MS in Physics from University of California, Los Angeles in 1982 and 1984 respectively, and received MS in Electrical Engineering (OPTICS) from University of Southern California in 1987. His career in Photonics began in Avimo Electro-optics, Singapore where he designed various kinds of optical systems for military, commercial and medical applications. He received his PhD degree from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore in 2000 for thermal characterization of thin films, and was a research associate there from 1999-2000. He became a faculty member in NTU in 2001 and was promoted to Associate Professor before he resigned in Feb 2010. While he was in NTU, he secured various research grants including the SBIC (Singapore Bio-imaging Consortium), A*STAR grant of USD 562K for the development of ultra high spatial and temporal resolution system for the study of live cells. He is author or coauthor to 40 international publications with an external citation over 200 and a reviewer of many Photonics related journals. His research interests include thermal characterization of thin film and nanostructures, diffused optical wireless communication, and bioimaging and biosensing.